Abraham Rodrigues Brandon

1766 - 1831

Claimant or beneficiary


The executors of Abraham R. Brandon were awarded the compensation for Hopeland plantation in Barbados and for one other smaller award on the island: the same men also received several other small awards, although they were not identified as executors in them.

  1. Abraham Rodrigues Brandon owned 168 slaves in 1817, 'the largest number held by any of the colony's Jews.'

  2. He was born in London, the son of Abraham Rodrigues Brandon and Abigail da Fonseca Israel. He married (1) Sarah Esther Lopez (b. 1770, St. Michael, Barbados, died 30 March 1823); (2) Sarah Simpson Wood in 1823 in St. Joseph, Barbados. She was the daughter of John Wood and Margaret Gibson Simpson and was aged 22 when she married the 57-year-old Brandon.

    The children of the marriages were:
    with Sarah Esther, Esther Rodrigues Brandon, b., St.Michael, Barbados; Isaac Lopez Brandon, b. 1792, Barbados, d. 12 Dec 1855, New York, USA; Sarah Rodrigues Brandon, b. 1799, Barbados, d. 20 Feb 1828, New York, USA.

    With Sarah Simpson Wood: Julia Rodrigues Brandon: 1824-1916; Esther Rodrigues Brandon: 1825- ; Lavinia Rodrigues Brandon: 1826- ; Abraham Rodrigues Brandon: 1826-1826; Joseph Rodrigues Brandon: 1828-1916 ; Alfred Rodrigues Brandon: 1830-1831.

    Abraham Rodrigues Brandon's widow Sarah Simpson (nee Wood) reportedly moved to London after her husband's death, remarried to Daniel Goody and settled in Stepney, then Ratcliffe, until her death in 1892 in Paddington.

    The portrait of Brandon was donated to the Museum of the City of New York by the descendants of his daughter Sarah Moses. It was painted by John Wesley Jarvis to celebrate his second marriage and is reproduced on the Goody family tree webpage

  3. In a Levy Book list for St James, Barbados, 1822, Brandon was listed as owning, with R. M. Smitten, 68 enslaved and 206 acres of land. The name of the estate (or estates) was not given.

  4. The Brandon family has been extensively researched by Ann E. Gegan. "The children from [Sarah Brandon's] first marriage were sent to boarding schools upon relocating to London after leaving Barbados after Abraham's death and a massive hurricane a few months later. Sarah's surviving son Joseph attended university in London, and then entered his older half-brother Isaac's shipping and trade business in New York and Paris. Joseph met Sarah Cecilia Florance, the daughter of Henry Florance, a member of a well-known and wealthy Sephardic family located in New Orleans and Philadelphia, during her "coming out into society" season in New York. He married Sarah in 1854, and together they sailed around the Horn to San Francisco to open a branch of Isaac's business in 1855. In 1857, Joseph began the study of law, and became one of the best known attorneys and judges in early California. He was well-known as a defender of civil rights for Jews... [The descendants] also have the miniature oil painting made of Sarah Simpson Wood at age 10, and still in its original frame. When having the painting photographed, it was removed temporarily from its frame, and a lock of Sarah Simpson Wood's golden hair was found behind the portrait."


  1. Eli Faber Jews, slaves and the slave-trade: setting the record straight (New York University Press, 1998) Plate 11, between pp. 86 and 87.

  2. Annie-Gegan family tree: Sarah Lopez and Annie-Gegan family tree: Brandon; Goody family tree. Accessed 30 August 2013 and 30 April 2015. The census entries for 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881 and 1891 tend to support the account given on the Goody family tree site but the details have not been verified by LBS. On her marriage to Daniel Goody at St Pancras 10/10/1833 she was given as Sarah Simpson Wood spinster, most probably due to her first marriage being to a Jew while her second was in the Anglican tradition.

  3. Levy Book for St James, 1822. Barbados Department of Archives, RB9/3/7.

  4. Email from Ann E. Gegan, 16/01/2017. See public member tree, SchumanGeganBruendermanSchirrmacherRittmeyer on Ancestry.com

We are grateful to Ann E. Gegan for her assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

(1) Sarah Esther Lopez; (2) Sarah Simpson (nee Wood)
With (1) 2 daughters, 1 son; with (2) 3 daughters, 3 sons

Associated Claims (2)

£38 16s 9d
Beneficiary deceased
£4,004 6s 7d
Beneficiary deceased

Associated Estates (5)

The dates listed below have different categories as denoted by the letters in the brackets following each date. Here is a key to explain those letter codes:

  • SD - Association Start Date
  • SY - Association Start Year
  • EA - Earliest Known Association
  • ED - Association End Date
  • EY - Association End Year
  • LA - Latest Known Association
1817 [EA] - 1831 [EY] → Owner
1826 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1826 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Executor
1823 [EA] - → Not known

Representative - attorney?

1820 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Executor