Andrew Jackson and Hannah Loretta were the children of Sylvester Brown and Catherine Altenburg. They grew up on a farm in Dayton township. Andrew was one of the thousands of young men who were drawn to California by the lure of gold. While there he became friends with a young man about his age named William Martin.
The two spent several years in panning for gold, but after several years of roughing it, they decided they had enough gold and would like to go home. There was no way of transporting their gold in those days except carrying it on their persons, so they had money belts made, with pockets for the gold dust and nuggets. They each carried what was then considered a small fortune with them.
Andrew pursuaded his friend to come home with him to Illinois and there William met Andrew’s sister, Loretta. The two young men made quite a splash with their money and Andrew was as interested in Emma Dunavan as William was in Loretta. They married in a double wedding ceremony on March 2, 1865, and all went to Niagara Falls for their honeymoon.