Historic Elmwood Cemetery & Foundation

Historic Elmwood Cemetery & Foundation

Where Detroit's History Endures
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Elijah Brush

Elijah Brush was born at Bennington Vermont. He came to Detroit in 1798. His father was a Revolutionary War Army Colonel and had taken part in the Battle of Bennington. Elijah a graduate of Dartmouth College had studied law and was admitted to the bar. He first practiced law in Detroit.


In 1803, within five years of coming to Detroit, he was elected a trustee of the town corporation, and in the same year served as a supervisor. In 1805 he was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel of the Legionary Corps of Territorial Militia, and under the Act of 1806 he was appointed the second Mayor of incorporated Detroit. He, in 1806, was also appointed Treasurer of the Territory and served in that post until December 13, 1813. He held the post of U. S. Attorney from 1811 to 1814.

It was in his capacity as Militia Colonel that Brush and others were forced into the capitulation of Detroit to the British during in 1812. The officers were forced to leave the city and territory for Toronto, Then known as York. He met his brother-in-law (Askin); a British officer and through his influence Brush was paroled, and sent behind American lines (to Ohio). He was then under General Harrison’s command. They re-entered Detroit in October of 1813. On December 14, 1813 Colonel Elijah Brush died.

Colonel Brush had married Adelaide Askin the daughter of John Askin, on February 17, 1802. In 1806 the Askin Farm in Detroit, became known as the Brush Farm. Elijah and Adelaide had four children who survived their father.

Born: 17--
Died: December 14, 1813
Buried: Section A, Lot 73