The descendants of an El Dorado County pioneer family held a reunion picnic at Jayhawk in May. In attendance were 50 family members and friends who enjoyed a potluck luncheon and shared memories and stories of their Brandon pioneer heritage in the Rescue area.
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A highlight of the event was a concert by violin virtuoso, Corina Stoian, who played selections by familiar American composers, as well as a classical repertoire.
Family members were busy during the day filling in many of the spaces on a six-generation Brandon descendancy chart. This was a listing of all those who claim ancestry back to the original California Gold Rush immigrant — Edgar Brandon.
The 10th of 14 children of William Brandon and Tryphena Fuller, Edgar Brandon was born in 1821 in Huntington, Luzerne County, Penn.
He first farmed in Lee County, Ill. for several years before leaving the prairies to head west in 1852.
He came to El Dorado County by covered wagon and settled in the bustling mining camp of Jayhawk.
In his early years, he worked as a clerk in John Wing’s store in nearby Rescue. There he took payment from miners using a set of scales for weighing gold dust. His scales and the set of weights are still in the possession of his descendants in California. He later served as constable for White Oak Township.
In 1861, Edgar married Mary Josephine Reimer, the 17-year old daughter of pioneer couple, Frederick and Maria Reimer, both of whom were born in Germany.
Mary J. Reimer had come to El Dorado County via the Isthmus of Panama with her parents in 1853 from her native St Joseph County, Ind.
Edgar and Mary Brandon had 11 children, five of whom are buried near them in the Brandon-Reimer plot at the Jayhawk Cemetery.
Mary’s parents, Frederick and Maria (Zaehnle) Reimer are also buried at Jayhawk. The Reimer family has the oldest grave marker known at Jayhawk. Their living descendants now number well over 100 — some going down to the seventh generation. A few of these descendants still reside in the county.
Family members in attendance agreed that another reunion should be held in two years.
Brandon descendants and their spouses who attended the reunion were:
Denise Cook and her son, Ryan T. Nutting, both of El Dorado;
Joshua and Mary Denney, their son, Bryson, and Joshua’s sister, Jaimie Denney, all of Orangevale;
Denise Ebright, her husband, Kevin Harrington and their son, Cody Harrington, of Oakland;
Joel and Linda Ebright of Pleasanton;
Jim and Erin Ebright, their daughter, Samantha and son, Seth of South Lake Tahoe;
Liz Gibson of Sacramento;
John Gibson of Folsom;
Melanie Howell of Bainbridge, Wash.;
Jim and Sheila Kanne of Benicia;
Randy and Karen Kemp of Cabot, Ark.;
Joseph and April McHugh of Folsom;
Patty McHugh of Chico;
Carl Brandon Scanlon and wife, Elaine of Elk Grove;
Larry and Christine Swick, their daughter, Melanie, and sons, Adam and Brandon of Incline, Nev.;
Tom Swick, his son, Cameron and daughter, Allison of Colfax;
Mike and Lorrie Tanner of Elk Grove;
Maurya Tlustosch of Sacramento;
Tamara Vargas and her daughter Sara Vasquez, her sister, Michelle and Michelle’s son, Riley of Sacramento;
Chris and Carla Walker of Sonora;
Chuck and Karrin Walker of Modesto.
Others attending were: Francis Carpenter of Rescue, Corina Stoian of Hayward and Bill Teie of Rescue.