Brewer Descendants of Johannes (Jan) Brouwer

Welcome to the Brewer line of Jan Brouwer (1632-1702) of New Amersfoort (Flatlands), New Netherland (New York)

The purpose of this site is to expand upon the results of the Brewer DNA Surname Project hosted by FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA)  at:



The Brewer Surname Project uses Y-DNA test results to identify family groups of genetically related living male participants through their matching haplotypes (genetic signatures).  Such testing can show a definite relationship exists between two or more males and that they share a common ancestor within genealogical time spans, but not with whom or when.  Documented genealogical pedigrees add the missing information.  The two sets of data (paper trail and DNA results) compliment and support one another.  Here, on this site, we provide the genealogical pedigrees, keyed to the DNA test by individual Kit number.  This information is presented on the “Pedigrees” page where you may find your own genealogical connection to a participant and contact information enabling you to exchange family research with them. 

(Note: to navigate this site, click on the name of the page you wish to visit located in the side bar at the left of each page)

[ Feb, 2015] An Application of FTDNA’s BIG Y Test to our Brewer Y-DNA Project:  The past few years has witnessed a revolution in genetic genealogy. The breakthrough is due to the introduction by FTDNA of Next-Generation Sequencing technology providing massive sequencing of the Y-Chromosome at reasonable costs to the public called “BIG Y”.

We have analyzed BIG Y test results for four Brewer DNA project participants and the results are  presented in a series of three reports available on line for download to your computer. See the Executive Summary here link to document  and an Addendum (Aug 2015) found here  

We describe the results of sampling ~ 20 million Y-DNA base pairs to sequence ~ 10-11 Mb in each of the participants yielding 63,000 SNPs including more than 1,400 in our line, 30 of which are unique to us. Unique family SNPs discovered by analysis of the BIG Y along with ~ 400 marker STR haplotypes have been used to calibrate specific mutation rates applicable to our ancestral line and used to estimate the TMRCA between our Brewer family descendants of Jan Brouwer (1632-1702).

Our results enable us to determine both the deep ancestry of our family and recent ancestry as well. As seen in the reports linked above, approximately 1 mutation every 1.6 generations are expected. This is in contrast to past technology limiting us to use of targeted specific SNPs that only defined haplogroups of many men related tens of thousands of years ago. A new branch of the Human Phylogenetic tree has been identified for our family and family specific SNP mutations that enable individuals possibly related to the Jan Brouwer group, but with incomplete documentation, to verify their position on our tree by purchasing single SNP tests. We hope to use such unique SNP tests to facilitate inexpensive testing of individuals in North Western Europe to help locate the ancestral home of Jan Brouwer.

Sharing research and family information amongst the matched members has helped some individuals extend their pedigree three or more generations and to clear up mistaken connections, while others have discovered connections they were previously unaware of.  DNA testing has proved to be a fruitful genealogical tool for all of us.

 Are You related to the 17th century immigrant Johannes Brouwer?  

Find Out Now! -- 

With the pedigrees available, we can identify the Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) of the participants and, coupled with the DNA results, we are able to make available for the first time derived Ancestral Y- chromosome Haplotypes (the male genetic signature of the earliest known ancestor), at a significant 37 marker accuracy, for the family patriarchs (MRCAs) including the likely genetic signature of Johannes (Jan) Brouwer of Flatlands. That data is presented on the “MRCA” page.

Unique Jan Brouwer Genetic Marker Found: Results from extending the Y-DNA test to 67 markers in some members of the Jan Brouwer descendants has revealed that we have a marker value that is so rare that it is specific to identifying our own family branch within the larger haplogroup I2b1c. A very rare DYS565 Allele value of 7 repeats has been found in the Jan Brouwer descendants. This value defines a unique family branch within the major haplogroup I2b1c; a mutation that likely occurred in an ancestor living in the Belgium / Netherlands / Germany region 400 to 700 years before the present.  If two people share the allele value on this marker and are similar enough across the rest of the markers to share a common ancestor in a genealogical time frame, then they belong to the same family branch and everyone without the rare allele does not. For a more detailed report click here

[ April 19, 2012]  A new document is available presenting a narrative story of our ancestral patriarch Jan Brouwer and his family, recounting their emigration to the New World from Holland in 1656 and their subsequent life in New Amsterdam (1657-1664) and New Amersfoort (called Flatlands by the English after 1665) on Long Island, from 1665-1702 . The Document is posted on Google-drive and can be accessed on line by clicking the link  Jan Brouwer Historical narrative  . Although it can be read on-line, the resolution provided by google in this mode is poor, very much poorer than the document itself, so the viewing of pictures and text is compromised making it difficult to read. To bypass this problem you can download the document to your computer where you can read it with crisp, sharp text and pictures, a much more satisfying experience. Click on the above link, select "File" in the upper left corner and click on "Download." It will download as a PDF document.  Embedded in the narrative are links to a short video of Amsterdam in the Dutch Golden Age of the 17th century, and a video virtual fly-by of old "New Amsterdam" in 1664. They are an integral part of the story and will enrich your appreciation of the era in which Jan Brouwer lived.

[ June 14, 2011A new Web Site, “The Civil War and Lt. Colonel Melvin Brewer” has been posted at http://sites.google.com/site/ltcolmelvinbrewer/

In recognition of this year's 150th anniversary of the beginning of our Civil War, this biographical sketch has been prepared in memory of Melvin Philip Brewer who honorably served in command positions with the First and Seventh Michigan Cavalry regiment from 9 August 1861 until his death September 19, 1864. His service included General Custer’s Cavalry charge at Gettysburg and action in nearly every battle and campaign waged by the mounted forces in the eastern theater. Melvin Brewer was a 7th generation descendant of Johannes (Jan) Brouwer (1632-1702) of Flatlands. His lineage is Melvin7 Brewer (Philip6 Brewer, John5 Brewer, Elias4 Brewer, Elias3 Brouwer, Derck2 Brouwer, Jan1 Brouwer). 

[ Nov 17, 2010]  A Web Site, "Our Brouwer/Brewer Family Finder (FF) Autosomal Project" can be found at:  http://web.me.com/brewpe/Jan_Brouwer_Family_Finder  

NOTE: This web page will be removed as of June 30 2012

The site describes and documents our research project aimed at augmenting our Y- DNA genetic genealogy and traditional genealogical research by using the FTDNA Family Finder autosomal testing of seven selected members of the group of Jan Brouwer descendants.

On the page “ Haplogroup I2b1c” we define the SNP mutations that determine our Brewer family location on the Y-DNA tree of Homo Sapiens according to the classification adopted by the Y-Chromosome Consortium (YCC) May 2008 [Note: the classification I2b was previously designated I1-c].  There we present a discussion of “Our Deep Time” genetic journey, identifying the likely locale where our Brewer family “Adam” originated 15,000 years ago. A link is provided to the Genographic project that uses DNA to trace our human family migrations out of Africa  to populate the world. Added Information Sept 8, 2010 -- Haplogroup I2b was divided into I2b1 which was further divided into 5 subgroups, one of which is I2b1c.  It has been shown that the Jan Brouwer descendants are positive for SNP P78, thus identifying them as Haplogroup I2b1c.


On the page “About Johannes” we provide some information regarding this 17th century Dutch immigrant to America and his family, introducing him to the viewer. We then provide a page of “Resources” where you are directed to detailed genealogical research specific to Johannes Brouwer with which to investigate this family line in more depth.

The page link:  “Origins” provides a status report on research into the european  origins of Johannes Brouwer of Flatlands.  It discusses Genealogical research of the Netherlands digital Archives, searching birth, marriage, and baptisms in Amsterdam, the Frisian Islands  and Frieland as well as lists of passenger records of ships leaving Amsterdam for New Netherland.  In addition, a Genetic Genealogy review of  the Netherlands DNA databases for matches of Y-DNA haplotypes and haplogroups to the ancestral signature of Johannes is summarized.  Also included is a first look at German DNA databases exploring a possible  German origin for Johannes.  The material includes links to useful genealogy research sites in the Netherlands.

The “Descendants” page follows the male descendants of Johannes Brouwer of Flatlands from generation to generation, identifying Johannes as the first generation and taking a “Top Down” approach to finding the “missing links” between Johannes and his living descendants.  

        In lieu of their own page bar, we created links both here and within the Descendants page to “Pieter’s Line”  which provides material specific to the 3rd generation line of male descendants that follow from the Pieter2 (Johannes1) Brouwer family, and  “Derck’s Line” which provides material specific to the 3rd generation line of male descendants that follow from the Derck2 (Johannes1) Brouwer family. Both lines contain further links to their 4th generation male children.   

Finally, the “Speculation” page deals with speculative ideas and material specific to finding documentation linking the pedigrees of the DNA project participants to the ancestral  Johannes Brouwer family. 

Chris Chester has provided a very useful site for Brewer researchers at his Brouwer Genealogy Blog

and his Brouwer Genealogy Database is indispensable.  Chris has also provided on line a Five Generation Descendant Report for Jan Brouwer as well as a very useful Descendant Chart and a Family Group Sheet.

[ November 17, 2009] Revised “Pedigree” page listing of patriarchs of three branches  of the family of Johannes Brouwer through his grandson Elias3 Brouwer and Helena Willemse. Created a Dirk4/Derrick Brewer Branch. This was in response to new test results and a new pedigree, that of Douglas Cooper Brewer, Kit 163954, who exactly matches (37/37) Michael E. Brewer (Kit 157835 whose pedigree was added Aug 22, 2009, see below) and they have a 99% likelihood of a common ancestor -- possibly Dirk4 (Elias3, Derck2, Johannes1) bpt. 1732. (Note: See caveats added December 1, 2009).  (September 26, 2010)  Added another family branch, that of John4/Jan Brouwer (Jan3, Derck2, Johannes1) bp 1726 with the pedigree of Kit 187629 Thomas H Brower. 

[October 2, 2009]:  Added material in “Speculations”  concerned with relating David Brewer (1762) /Euphemia Warner to the Jan Brouwer line 

[September 2009]:  Added new section called “Open Issues.”  The recent addition of two more genetic descendants of the Jan Brouwer family to the Brewer Surname Project and the interrelationship of their Y-DNA signatures with prior members has raised several issues regarding previously posted lines of descent and the validity of some of the participants genealogical pedigrees, at the same time hinting at some possible resolutions to outstanding problems. In this discussion I review the problems as I perceive them and suggest some directions for future research while discussing the related problems:

     A. Linking John Brewer/Elsie Lewis of Adam Co. OH to Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, and Errors in posted claims for John Brewer/Elsie Lewis

     B. Finding assumed connections of Rose/Olson/Embody to the Brewer family, 

     C. Linking David Brewer/Euphemia Warner to a Jan Brouwer lineage, and 

     D. Connecting William. L. Brewer (b. 1826 in LA) to the early Brouwer family. 

[August 22, 2009] A new Brewer family Pedigree and new branch: RICHARD/DERICK BREWER Branch  added on the Pedigree page. [Note: This has been changed to Dirk4/Derrick Brewer BranchNov. 17, 2009] Michael E. Brewer has an exact 37/37 marker match to Kit 60686 Glen Brewer, of the John BREWER Branch, and 35/37 match to Kit 44994 Richard Brewer, of the Elias BROUWER Branch, indicating they are tightly related (very few people achieve this close level of a match) with a 99% likelihood they share a common ancestor. (Michael also matches exactly 37/37 with Douglas Brewer, Kit 163954; see above Nov 17, 2009). More information will be provided later on the “Speculation” page.

Relevant publication:  "DNA Analysis: Adam Brouwer Berkhoven, Elias Brouwer of New Jersey, and John Brewer of Ohio" by Richard D. Brewer, Scott Kraus, and William B. Bogardus, together with a compiled genealogy of ” Jan Brouwer of Flatlands and Descendants”  in the New York Genealogy and Biographical RECORD, Volume 138, Number 4, October 2007.  It not only provides indisputable evidence against Adam Brouwer being related to Johannes Brouwer, Elias Brouwer or John Brewer, as has often been claimed in the literature, but in addition provides the ancestral DNA signature for Adam, complimenting that of Johannes, Elias and John appearing on our MRCA page. These signatures can be used to compare with the signature of any persons claiming descent from one of the above ancestors. Further it demonstrates the utility of DNA testing.  For more information see the “Resources” page.

Click on the Links provided below to visit other Brewer Surname DNA websites associated with Brewer family groups NOT related to the Jan Brouwer Line:

        Adam Brouwer Genealogy  genetic genealogy associated with Adam Brouwer Berckhoven of Brooklyn and his descendants including individual pedigrees for  the Y-DNA project members in this family group.

        Brewer - Lanier line  this site contains genealogical information as well as individual pedigrees for DNA project members in this family group; one of the major Brewer groups not related to either Adam Brouwer or Jan Brouwer. 


e-mail  brewerdna@gmail.com

Site Updates:

August 11, 2015 A new document link to the results of our project's "BIG Y" DNA tests added. 

April 19, 2012  A new document link to a narrative story of our ancestral patriarch Jan Brouwer and his family was added.

June 14, 2011 Added reference to new web page in recognition of this year’s 150th anniversary of Lt. Col. Melvin P. Brewer’s service in the 1st & 7th Michigan Cavalry regiments during the Civil War.

Feb 5, 2011  Added the 67 marker Kit 109475, Willliam Thomas Brewer III, to the pedigree documentation. Carrying the rare marker DYS565 Allele value of 7 repeats that defines the Johannes Brouwer family and matching exactly 37/37 markers to the other pedigrees who have not yet tested at 67 markers validates their descent from Johannes Brouwer. 

Nov 17, 2010 Added reference to our Jan Brouwer FTDNA Family Finder autosomal project.  Also added reference to new Four Generation Descendant report  as well as Family Group Sheets for 3 generations of Jan Brouwer descendants now posted on line by Chris Chester.

Sept 26, 2010  Added new family branch to pedigree listings accommodating the Hempstead, Queens, NY line descending from Jan3, Derck2’s first son  

Sept 8 , 2010 Added New results of extension of Jan Brouwer descendants Y-DNA test at 67 markers which reveal a unique, rare, allele value of 7 at DYS565 which defines the Jan Brouwer line. Added results of SNP test positive for P78 placing Jan Brouwer descendants in haplogroup I2b1c.

May 17, 2010 Added section on the search for the european Origins of Johannes Brouwer of Flatlands. 

December 1, 2009  Added caveats to the new material on “Pedigree” page regarding lack of genealogical documentation of proposed common ancestor between  Kit 157835 and Kit 163954 in spite of exceptionally close genetic match ( exact 37/37 marker match)

November 17, 2009 Added new material to “Pedigree” page

October 2, 2009 Added new material to “Speculations” page

September 2009: Added “Open Issues” page

August 22, 2009:  “Pedigree” page. Added Pedigree for Kit 157835 and a new Branch for Richard/Derick Brewer (ca. 1732). [Note: changed to Dirk/Derrick Brewer Branch Nov. 17, 2009]

August 19, 2009:  “Speculations” page. Claims made that Revolutionary War service pertained to John4 Brewer (husband of Elsie Lewis & Sara Howell) are incorrect, the result of an erroneous DAR lineage. The John Brower who served under Col. Jacob Klock in the Tryon Co. Militia was a son of Harmanus Brouwer, a descendant of Willem Brouwer.

Jun 29, 2009added newly found information that Mary Hays from Massachusetts is wife to John Brewer (1768 ), son of Elias and Phebe Brewer. Added a chart to the MRCA page that depicts the signatures  of the Brewer surname project participants that closely match Johannes (Jan) Brouwer’s ancestral STR signature.

Apr 29, 2009, added an additional pedigree Kit 144256 to the John Brewer (1733) Branch showing a line of descent from  his 6th son, John Brewer (1792)

December 28, 2008, identified Elsie Lewis (sometimes said to be Elsie Dunbar, but without verification) as first wife of John Brewer (b. ca. 1733) and modified the birth order of their children. See Pedigrees and Speculation pages. 

August 2008 with additional pages of information and resources.

2 June 2008 --modified our Haplogroup designation from I1-c to I2-b to conform with the YCC classification changes of 2008.

Site Created 24 June 2007

July 11, 2011 Site transferred to Google sites from Apple's MobileMe