Eastern Pequot tribal member John Brushell was the son of Moses and Sylvia Brushell of North Stonington, Connecticut. As a child, when his father was at sea, the tribe's state-appointed overseer provided funds for Brushell's keeping in 1831. After that entry, the record is silent for him for forty years. He next appears on a tribal roster in 1873.
A list of names of those belonging to the Pequot Tribe of Indians of North Stonington, June 27, 1873, RG3: Box 384, New London County Court, Indians, 1716-1855 (Disarranged), C.S.L.