Jessamine Journal, September 1, 1899, DEAN REUNION HELD ON AUGUST 26, (SATURDAY) 1899
The reunion of the Dean family was held at the home of Melvin L Dean - the old homestead - near Pink, last Saturday. Besides the many relatives and family connections present, there were also a number of invited guests from the town and county, numbering in all over 100. The morning was devoted principally to photographing various groups of the family. At noon the dinner was served in picnic style on the lawn. It was just such a dinner as those who know the reputation of the Deans for their bounteous spreads would expect, and suffice to say everyone enjoyed it - especially the "town folks". After dinner, all repaired to the Chalybeate Springs where there was singing by an excellent choir of young voices and appropriate addresses by T. R. Dean, E. B. Hoover, B.A. Crutcher, J. W. Mitchell and W. M. Watts. Altogether it was a delightful occasion and one long to be remembered.
In 1785, William Hasselrig took out a patent for 8,000 acres of land on the Kentucky River. He had various parcels of land in the Hickman neighborhood, extending from the mouth of the Hickman Creek to about two miles beyond the farm of George McQuerry. In 1801, Christian Bruner, who was born in Lancaster, Pa. in 1774, was the first settler who opened the old Dean farm and erected the first log cabin where the present dwelling of Melvin Dean is now situated. The old farm has passed through many changes since Christian Bruner built the first house on the land in 1802. More than 40 years ago the late Harrison Dean became the purchaser of the farm.
The late Harrison Dean, who was born in Mercer county, Kentucky, was the fifth son of James and Keziah (Green) Dean. In 1832, he came to Jessamine County to live and in 1835 was married to Nancy Owens, daughter of Fleming and Annie (Tombs) Owens, both of whom were born in Halifax County, Virginia. Nancy Owens was born in Jessamine County, Kentucky. In 1851 Mr Dean moved from this state to Illinois. He purchased land in McLean County, but on account of sickness returned to Jessamine County, Kentucky, after an absence of one year. The beautiful city of Bloomington now stands upon the land that was owned by Mr Dean in the pioneer days. After his return to Kentucky, Harrison Dean rented land till 1857 when he bought of Silas Bruner the farm at Chalybeate Springs on which he spent the remainder of his life. He died March 29, 1894. Unto Harrison Dean and wife were born 10 children; eight sons and two daughters: Following are their names in the order of their birth: Merrell Dean born November 17, 1836; James Harvey, November 18, 1838; William H. May 1, 1841; Mrs Lizzie Carter, September 14, 1846; John Allen, August 21, 1843; Alexander S., May 4, 1849; Morris Dean, January 1, 1852; Mrs Priscilla Hamilton, June 30, 1854; Dewitt Clinton, March 12, 1847; Melvin Lowry, January 18, 1850. Total children ages 516 years. All but one of these are living today -- Priscilla Dean Hamilton - the youngest of the two daughters, who was killed by lightning at Nicholasville in 1876. This sad misfortune left Albert C Hamilton, the husband, with two little girls bereft of their mother, Eunice (Hamilton) Sparks of Nicholasville and Bernice (Hamilton) Bryant of Memphis, Tennessee. Mrs Bryant is the only one of Harrison Dean's direct descendants that lives outside Jessamine County. The other children have married also and have reared families. The largest family of grandchildren is that of William H Dean - thirteen, only nine of whom are living. Another son, Morris Dean, who married Maria Jasper, has nine children, all of whom are living.
As ascertained at the reunion last Saturday the family of Harrison Dean numbered as follows: children 10, one being dead; grandchildren 78, 11 dead; great grandchildren 29, thus making in all 108. It was found that the ages of all of these added together would be equivalent to one person living 1,535 years. The oldest member present was James Harvey Dean, the second son, aged 61. The oldest member of the family is M J Dean, aged 63. The youngest member was a great granddaughter, Hester Dean, aged one year, daughter of John and Eunice (Blakeman) Dean.
The Dean family, like the typical Kentuckians, have generally pursued farming and stock raising. The nine living children of Harrison Dean own together almost 3,000 acres of good land, all of which lies in sight of the Dean homeplace.