About This Collection
The Brooks - Queen Family Collection (1773-1979) documents the activities of members of two Washington families of the nineteenth century. The Brooks and Queens families united in 1828, when Jehiel Brooks and Margaret Queen, the daughter of Nicholas Louis Queen, married. The papers of these two men constitute the bulk of the collection. Jehiel Brooks came to the District to secure political appointment, but with the exception of an appointment in the Red River Indian Agency in Louisiana during the administration of Andrew Jackson (1829-1837), Brooks had little luck. Instead, he assumed the role of the gentleman farmer on a tract of land adjacent to property that later became part of The Catholic University of America (CUA). One of the largest holders of real estate in the District, Nicholas Queen ran the Queen's Hotel near the Capitol until his death in 1850.
The collection also includes the papers of Brooks' and Queen's descendants, including John Henry Brooks, who sold his parents' real estate to early twentieth-century developers of the Brookland neighborhood. These papers offer a view into the agrarian past of the District of Columbia, the lives of nineteenth-century property holders, political patronage during the mid-nineteenth century, and the work of federal agents among Native Americans as well as slavery and the Civil War.
This collection consists of correspondence, holographic copies and extracts of correspondence, legal documents (many related to land transactions), treaty papers, essays, newspaper clippings, financial records, 'memorials' to congress, notes, a Confederate government bond, and other papers spanning several generations. Some of the documents gathered here are present only as photocopies.