Peter Bryan Bruin
| Peter Bryan Bruin
(Revolutionary War soldier, planter in three states, and territorial judge)
|Born|| 1756 |
Winchester, Frederick County, Virginia
|Died|| 1827 (aged 70) |
Bruinsburg, Claiborne County, Mississippi
|Spouse|| Elizabeth Edmonds Bruin (married 1781-1807, her death)
Born in Winchester, Virginia, he was a son of Bryan Bruin and the former Elizabeth Humphreys. He was educated at the College of Philadelphia in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He served thereafter in the American Revolutionary War, having risen to the rank of lieutenant colonel. He was wounded and captured at Quebec, Canada, and subsequently fought in New Jersey and North Carolina. He was wounded a second time at the bloody battle of Brandywine near Philadelphia. He was aide-de-camp to General John Sullivan, fought at Newport, Rhode Island, and in campaign against Indians in northern New York.
In 1781, Bruin married the former Elizabeth Edmonds (c. 1759-1807) of Fauquier County, Virginia. The couple had six children: Elizabeth (1781-1857); Sophia (c. 1787-1827); Maria; Matilda; Edmonds; Timothy (last two names may be incorrect). After the Revolutionary War, Bruin owned the plantation “Roscommon” on the Potomac River in Berkeley County, Virginia. He moved to nearby Bath, Virginia, and became a merchant. In 1788, he emigrated to what was then Spanish West Florida, where he acquired the plantation “Castle Bruin” at Bruinsburg, near Natchez, Mississippi.
He was a Mississippi territorial judge from 1798 to 1809, in which capacity he participated in the Aaron Burr conspiracy hearing of 1807. He took ownership of still another plantation on the shores of Lake Bruin, an oxbow lake of the Mississippi River in Concordia and Tensas parishes, Louisiana. For a number of years, he lived on the lake, now a state park, that bears his name. He died at the age of seventy and is interred near Bruinsburg, now a ghost town in Claiborne County, Mississippi.
- Bruin, Peter Bryan. A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography: Louisiana Historical Association. Retrieved on April 22, 2020.
- A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography uses multiple sources for the article on Bruin: William S. Coker, “Peter Bruin: Record as Soldier, Judge, Settler,” Mississippi Sesquicentennial Edition, Natchez Democrat, January 1968; “Peter Bryan Bruin: Soldier, Judge and Frontiesman,” West Virginia History, XXX (1969); “The Bruins and the Formulation of Spanish Immigration Policy in the Old Southwest, 1787-88,” in John Francis McDermott, ed., The Spanish in The Mississippi Valley, 1763-1804 (1974); “Peter Bryan Bruin: Soldier, Frontiersman and Judge,” Vol. IV: The Spanish Borderlands Series (Pensacola, Florida); “Colonel Peter Bryan Bruin: Virginia, Spanish West Florida, and Louisiana Planter,” in R. Alton Lee, ed., Agricultural Legacies: Essays in Honor of Gilbert C. Fite (1986).