Born: 27 November 1844 in Barren County, KY
Died: 30 March 1926in Putnam County, TN
Buried: Odd Fellows Cemetery,Putnam County, TN
Parents: Egbert H. and Mary P. (Baker) Brassell
Brother to: the Infamous Joseph Andrew and George Lewis alias "Teek" Brassell who were hung in Cookeville for the murder of Russell Allison.

Married: Harriett Zenira Dowell on 3 March 1874 in Putnam County, TN
Born: 12 October 1853 in Jackson County, TN
Died: 10 March 1922in Putnam County, TN
Buried: Odd Fellows Cemetery, Putnam County, TN
Parents: Reuben Hickman and Adaline Layne (Cooke) Dowell


  1. Robert Clay Brassell
  2. Claude Brassell
  3. Daisy Brassell
  4. Carrie E. Brassell
  5. Eddie Brassell
  6. Richard T. Brassell
  7. Egbert H. Brassell
  8. John Brassell
  9. Walter Brassell
  10. Ruby Brassell


  • Brother: William E. Brassell - 1st Tennessee Mounted Infantry - USA
  • Brother-in-law: Nathan Montgomery Cox - 4th Tennessee Battalion - CSA
  • Brother-in-law: David Crockett Patton - 5th Tennessee Cavalry - USA


1 stTennessee Mounted Infantry
Company A


  • Enlisted as a Private and left as a Private
  • Enlisted 12/25/1864 at Carthage, TN
  • Mustered In: 1/21/1864
  • Age: 19
  • Jan 21 - Feb 29, 1864: Present
  • Jan - Aug, 1864: Present
  • Mustered Out: 1/30/1865
  • Enlistment Papers are included

8 thTennessee Mounted Infantry
Company C


  • Entered the service as a Private and left the service as a Private
  • Enlisted 10 February 1865 in Carthage, TN
  • Age: 21 years
  • Eyes: Blue
  • Hair: Light
  • Complexion: Fair
  • Height: 5' 10"
  • Mustered In: 10 February 1865 at Carthage
  • Not present at Muster In
  • Descriptive Roll Dated 7 Apr 1865
    • Born: Smith County, TN
    • Age: 21 years
    • Occupation: Farmer
    • Eyes: Blue
    • Hair: Light
    • Complexion: Fair
    • Height: 5' 11"
  • 27 Feb - 30 Apr 1865: <no remarks>
  • 30 Jun 1865: Present
  • Muster Out: 17 Aug 1865
  • Age: 21
  • Enlistment Papers Included



  • 1850 Census: Barren County, TN, Page 377
  • 1860 Census: Smith County, TN, Page 266
  • 1870 Census: Smith County, TN, Page 4
  • 1880 Census: Putnam County, TN, Page 144D
  • 1900 Census: Putnam County, TN, Page 173B
  • 1910 Census: Putnam County, TN, Page 4A
  • 1920 Census: Putnam County, TN, Page 226


Putnam County, TN
Will Book 6
Online at FamilySearch

  • Putnam County, TN Wills Volume 6
  • Name: Brassell , J. R.
  • Page(s): 367-368
  • Date the Will was Written: Oct 1, 1925
  • Date the Will was Recorded: Apr 15, 1926
  • Heirs Named in the Will:
    1) Son, Clay Brassell (deceased) of Dallas, Tex.
    2) Son, Claude Brassell of Pine Bluff, Ark
    3) Son E.H. Brassell, of Pine Bluff, Ark.
    4) Son, R.T. Brassell, (deceased) of Pine Bluff, Ark.
    5) Son, John Brassell of Evansville, Ind.
    6) Son, Walter Brassell, of San Antonio, Tex.
    7) Daughter Attie Jennings, of Lynchburg, VA.
    8) Daughter, Carrie Sadler of Baxter, Tenn. - Husband John Lee Sadler
    9) Daughter, Ruby Hale, (deceased) of Cadis, Ky.
    10) Daughter Eddie Ward, of Livingston, Tenn.


  • Death Certificate: Putnam County, TN (1926) - #7318 - James R. Brassell
  • Death Certificate: Putnam County, TN (1922) - #69 - Harriett Brassell
  • The Cookeville Press, 7 April 1898, Vol. XI, No. 25, Page - 1

    A BLOODY DEED -- Giles Bradford, Jr., Killed at Ai, Last Sunday. -- James Braswell and Sons, Clay and Claude, Arrested. -- They Will Be Given a Preliminary Hearing Next Saturday at this Place -- Considerable Difficulty was Encountered in Getting at the Exact Facts -- Giles Bradford, Jr., was shot and stabbed to death at Ai last Sunday, by, report says, Clay and Claude Braswell. We learn that a difficulty arose between William Bradford (a nephew of the deceased) and Clay Braswell, when the deceased interferred to separate them. About this time a general fight ensued, several being mixed up in it. In the meantime, Giles Bradford was badly cut in the side and a stab in the back to the hollow, and shot through both lungs, from the effect of which he died in about four minutes. The jury of inquest reported as we are informed, that the deceased came to his death from a pistol shot fired by Claude Braswell, and bruises with brass knucks on the hand of James Braswell. Warrants for the arrest of Clay, Claude, and James Braswell were sworn out and placed in the hands of the Sheriff, who immediately went to the scene of the trouble and arrested James and Clay Braswell, but failed to find Claude. Clay was lodged in jail to await an examination, while James Braswell was out in charge of the Sheriff. We failed to find the report of the jury of inquest after search in the Clerk's office. The case was set for trial at the court house in Cookeville on last Tuesday, at which time Claude Braswell voluntarily came in and surrendered to the Sheriff. On application of the State the case was continued until next Saturday. James Braswell was allowed to give bond in the sum of $2000, but Clay and Claude were sent to jail. [Date: 4/7/1898, Vol. XI, No. 25, Page 1]

  • James Reuben Brassell was the old brother of the infamous Joe and Teke Brassell who were hung in Cookeville on the 27 March 1878 for the murder of Russell Allison in the late evening of 29 November 1875. Dobson Johnson, the co-conspirator who turned States Evidence, testified that Jim Brassell helped to plan the robbery but did not go with them to the Allison house, because his wife might become suspicious.