WARNER FAMILY HISTORY:
Bess Warner was born into a family that was descended from the first settlers at Plymouth and who came over on the Mayflower. Her father was Brainard Warner Sr and her mother was Mary Jacobs Parker.
Brainard Warner Sr. - Father
Born: 5/20/1847 Great Bend PA Died: 5/16/1916 Maryland
Father: Henry Warner 1812-1889 Mother: Julia Truesdale 1923-1917 Brainard came to Washington D.C. on his own when he was barely 16. He was smart, a Presbyterian and seemed to make friends and acquaintances easily. Brainard enlisted in the army during the Civil War:
Brainard H. Warner
Residence was not listed; Enlisted as a Private (date unknown). He also had service in: US Army General Service.
He enlisted Aug 19,1863. He left the Army to take a treasury appointment. He was described as dynamic and was a banker, financier, real estate developer, a trustee of Georgetown University and Howard University, founder of the Washing Public library and involved in many civic activities. He also had a law degree.
He built a Dupont Circle mansion at 2100 Massachusetts Avenue in 1884. He also built a country home in Kensington MD.. His family lived for many years in the mansion on Massachusetts Avenue. In 1924 it was sold, razed and an apartment building was built on the site. It later became the Fairfax Hotel on Embassy Row.
Brainard’s company managed the development of over 1000 buildings in the Washington D.C. area. He was also responsible for the development of Kensington MD which he built as a Victorian community.
Pictures of Brainard Warner show a serious balding man with a mustache. Passport data listed him as being around 5’ 6” tall. Brainard Warner Sr died in 1916 at the age of 67. He died almost two years to the day after he son Southard committed suicide in 1914.
Mary Jacobs Parker - Mother
Mary Jacobs Parker was Brainard Warner’s his first wife and the mother of nine of his children. She was descended from Edward Doty, a Pilgrim and an indentured servant, who sailed over on the Mayflower, signed the Mayflower Compact and helped to establish Plymouth Colony.
Edward Doty was something of a troublemaker. He engaged in a sword and dagger duel with another servant. He was sued many times for “breaking the peace” assault and other charges. He also won some lawsuits he filed. Payment of fines was usually in shillings or Indian corn.
Mary Jacobs Parker:
Born: April 16 1847 Pennsylvania
Died: 4-2-1885 age 38
Her parents were Andrew Parker and Anne Elizabeth Doty. She was born and raised in Pennsylvania. It appears that Mary Jacobs Warner died as a result of child birth. She died 1 month after the birth of her last child Lucy Maynard Warner. Lucy only lived 5 months.
Brainard and Mary Parker’s Children:
1. Julia Warner, born November 23, 1873 died Sept 12, 1875
2. Bess Warner, born November 23, 1873 died Feb 26, 1942
3. Brainard H. Warner, born June 2,1875 died Sept 18 1933
4. Anne Parker Warner, born October 29 1876 died April 16, 1967
5. Infant Warner stillborn 12-4-1877
6. Mary Parker Warner, born July 14 1879. Died June 1970 (In other records and in this diary her birth date is listed as July 19,1882 but in the Social Security Death Index it’s listed as July 14, 1879)
7. Southard Parker Warner born October 29, 1881 Died May 9, 1914
8. Andrew Parker Warner born Aug 8, 1883 died Feb 21, 1944
9. Lucy Maynard Warner born March 9, 1885 Died August 5, 1885
Of the 9 children only Brainard Jr and Andrew P Warner married.
Brainard Warner Sr married Mary Hamilton Phllips in 1887 two years after the death of his first wife. They married in Fredericksburg VA. She was 17 years his junior. Mary Hamilton Phillips was: Born: November 1864 Died: 1954 Married 1887 Fredericksburg Va
Brainard and Mary Hamilton had three children. There’s some discrepancy between the 1900 and 1910 census data on their names. I think the 1910 names are probably more accurate.
According to the 1900 census their names were:
1. Martha 10
2. Phillips 7
3. Henry H 2
According to the 1910 census their names were:
1. Margaret 19
2. Albert P 17
3. Hamilton H 11
Bess Warner was the oldest of Brainard Warner’s children. She had been born a twin. But her twin Julia died when she was almost two. Bess was 12 when her mother died. And she was 14 when her father married Mary Hamilton Phillips who was just 9 years older than she was. Bess called Mary Mamma in several of her diary entries.
Bess and her sister Anne never married. They lived together for most of their lives. They lived in the family home at 2100 Massachusetts Avenue. They also had a residence in Maryland. After 1924 they were both living at 1868 Columbia Road in Washington DC. At some point both Bess and Anne listed their occupation as Librarians. Bess was the branch librarian for the Takoma Park Maryland library. This was a branch of the Public Library of Washington D.C.which her father, Brainard Warner Sr. founded.
Bess and Anne both received financial support from their father. After his death in 1916 they were also the beneficiaries of a trust he set up. They both did a lot of world traveling – together and alone. Untilt heir brother Southard died in 1914 Bess and Anne frequently traveled with him.
Brainard H Warner Jr
At the age of 24 Brainard was the US consul at Leipzig Germany. He had been a consul or at least a year and was the youngest man in the consular service. He was consul there from at least 1898 to1901. One source I read said that Brainard Jr’s appointment to Leipzig was politically motivated and that he should have been assigned to a more “junior” consulate.
Note: Here’s the full story from Harper's Weekly Editorias by Carl Schurz : Harper's Weekly Editorial by Carl Schurz
Nonetheless he seems to have performed his duties quite well. Brainard Jr had a law degree and practiced in Washington DC. In a passport application Brainard Jr at 20 was described as: 6’ tall, blue eyes, light hair, fair complexion, oblong face, small mouth.
This is a description of the 4th of July celebration in Leipzig in 1898 which Brainard hosted. It mentions many of the people that Bess included in her diary entries NY Times July 4th in Berlin July 28, 1898
Brainard Jr didn’t get married until he was in his 40’s. In 1920 at the age of 45 Brainard lived in Bethesda MD with his wife Mary Moore and daughter Rebecca who was 2 ½. He and Mary had two more children: Mary (Mollie) and Brainard III. Brainard Warner and his family were also listed as living in Chevy Chase MD.
His son Brainard III was born in 1926, became a lawyer in the 1950’s and practiced law as his father did in Washington DC. Brainard III was only 7 when Brainard Jr died.
Brainard III married Mildred Jonathan around 1956. They lived in Chevy Chase MD. Brainard III practiced family and criminal law and helped to found the firm of Kaslow and Warner. Brainard III and Mildred had three children:
In a 1997 article he was described as Brainard “Hank” Warner. It said he was a “stockbroker for Washington’s Blue Chip families”
I believe Jonathan is a partner in the architectural firm of Hickok Warner.
Abby Parker Warner was an advertising manager.
Mildred died in 2001. Brainard III died at home in Chevy Chase of cancer in 2003.
Anne Parker Warner
Anne was just a year younger than her brother Brainard. Of the original 9 children born to Brainard Sr and Mary Jacobs, Anne and Mary both lived to be 91. Anne died in 1976 and Mary died in 1970. Throughout their lives she and Bess lived together. They also did a lot of trans Atlantic traveling. In one census record Anne listed her occupation as librarian (the same as Bess).
From the diaries we know that Anne handled the finances for Bess and herself. She balanced accounts, did their income tax and routinely dealt with the trust company.
She loved: flowers and the Cherry Blossoms, driving their Hupmobile, lectures at the Alliance Francaise , lectures on birds, reading, playing bridge, listening to the radio, attending concerts and ballet, going to the Corcoran Gallery. She also loved and was very close to her nieces Polly and Virginia (Mary’s daughters). Anne, Mary and Bess all seemed very close and they had a good relationship with their brothers Brainard and Parker. Anne was also close to her Aunts.
Southard Parker Warner
Southard Parker was in the US Consular Service since 1904 when he was 23. When Bess wrote this diary Southard was just 18. Southard committed suicide in 1914. He was US consul at Harbin Manchuria and had held that position since August 1912.. He had been hospitalized for three weeks and seemed to be making a good recovery when he shot and killed himself. It’s not clear what hospital he was in but in the following article it was referred to as an institution:. NY Times article Consul Warner a Suicide
On a passport application filed when he was a 21 year old student, Southard was described as 5’ 11 3/4” broad forehead, grey eyes, medium regular nose , medium mouth, oval chin, light brown hair and ruddy complexion.
In addition to Manchuria, Southard held consular positions at Gera Germany, Leipzig Germany and also in South America. He is mentioned by Bess in several of her diaries. He and Bess and Anne traveled together on several trips.
Mary Parker Warner
From a passport application in 1900 when she was 21 Mary was described as: 5’6” tall gray eyes high forehead prominent nose, light hair, dark complexion, prominent chin and chubby face. In 1927 she sailed from Cherbourg France to New York and listed her address as the Gafton Hotel (possibly Grafton Hotel) in Washington DC.
From content in the 1925 to 1929 Anne Warner diary, Mary was married to Levi Cooke (1882 -1933 ) and had two daughters: Polly and Virginia (b: August 8, 1914). Levi was a lawyer. In his World War I draft registration information he was described as tall and stout with brown hair and brown eyes. Their primary residence for a while was Wardman Park, a hotel built after World War I in the Woodley park section of Washington. Marriott Wardman Park They then moved to 2409 Wyoming , a 6-bedroom home they built in 1926. It had 7564 square feet.
Mary did a lot of traveling. As late as 1947 tshe’s listed as sailing from Southampton England to New York on the Queen Mary. At the time she still lived at the family home at 2409 Wyoming.Andrew Parker Warner
Andrew (known as Parker) eventually lived in Santa Fe NM. He was a surveyor for the US Land Office (Department of the Interior) and worked in California, Montana, Nevada and New Mexico. . From a lawsuit we know that he was married to Jennie M. Other records list her as Emma. Emma had been born in Glouchester England. Parker registered for the WWI draft in September 1918 but as far as I can find he never enlisted. The lawsuit states that he died without any children. His wife Emma sued to claim the 1/9th portion of his father’s trust. She wanted to continue to receive the annual trust income payments .as well as the full 1/9 split of the trust assets when Mary H. Warner died. It looks like the Warner family initially won a judgment denying Emma’s claim. But the ruling was later overturned on appeal. Emma had a daughter, Dorothy, from a previous marriage. Parker evidently adopted Dorothy.
In the 1930 census Parker also said he had been married at age 24. That would have been in 1907. So Parker must have had a first marriage to someone else because he didn’t marry Emma until 1926 or 1927.
Many members of the Warner family are buried at Oak Hill Cemetery, 1 19th century cemetery/park in the Georgetown section of Washington D.C. OakHill Cemetery
The family is buried in section 23 in the Corcoran section of the cemetery. Brainard Sr is buried there with his first wife Mary Jacobs. I don’t know where Brainard’s second wife Mary Hamilton Phillips is buried.
Seven of Brainard Warner Sr’s children are buried in the same family section:
1. Rebecca Parker Warner
2. Anne Parker Warner
3. Andrew Parker Warner
4. Julia Warner (Rebecca’s twin)
5. Lucy Maynard Warner
6. Southard Parker
7. Infant baby Warner
The only child not buried in Oak Hill is his son Brainard Warner Jr. I couldn’t locate his burial location. But Brainard Warner Jr’s son Brainard III is buried in the Warner family plot
1. Brainard Henry Warner III
2. Mildred Jonathan Warner (wife of Brainard III)
This is what’s at the graves of Brainard III and his wife Mildred:
[obelisk] In Fond Memory. / Beloved / Mother of Six. / MILDRED JONATHAN WARNER / Born: February 14, 1923 / Died: June 27, 2001. / and / Cherished Wife of / BRAINARD HENRY WARNER, III / Born: July 15, 1925 / Died: January 2, 2003.
/ Together Again, For All Time / Just What I Always Wanted. / Forever, With Love.
This is what’s recorded for the other graves:
OAK HILL CEMETERY, Georgetown, D.C. (Davidson)
LOTS 23-24 EAST
BRAINARD H. WARNER / born May 20, 1847 / died May 16, 1916. / MARY J. WARNER / Wife of / Brainard H.
Warner / died April 2, 1885 / aged 38 years. / WARNER. // REBECCA P. WARNER / born November 23, 1873 / died February 26, 1942.
/ ANDREW PARKER WARNER / born August 8, 1883 / died February 21, 1944.
/ ANNEPARKER WARNER / born October 29, 1876 / died April 16, 1967.
// Children of / Brainard H. and Mary J. / Warner.
/ JULIA WARNER / born November 23, 1873 / died September 12, 1875.
/ LUCY MAYNARD WARNER / born March9, 1885 / died August 5, 1885.
/ WARNER. // SOUTHARD P. WARNER / born October 29, 1881 / died May 9, 1914.
Place stones: A.P.W.; A.P.W.; S.P.W.; B.H.W.; M.J.W. / L.M.W.; R.P.W.; J.W. Unmarked Burial: Warner, Infant of B.H. & Mary, stillborn, bur. 4 DEC 1877
Further information about this individual or organization may be available in the Special Collections Research Center Wiki: Warner Family