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The Braithwaite family is a faction featured in Red Dead Redemption 2, serving as one of the two main antagonistic factions in the game's third chapter, alongside their rivals, the Gray family. They also serve as one of the main antagonistic factions in the Moonshiners DLC for Red Dead Online.


History

Background

Originating from England, the Braithwaites established themselves in America around 1779.[1] By the 19th century, they had a bustling slave plantation at their manor and became one of the richest and most powerful families in the area. At the peak of their power, the Braithwaites can even commit serious crimes, like rapes and murders, without fear of consequences.[2]

In 1806, Lucile Braithwaite gave the location of a significant sum of gold to Douglas Gray, a member of the Gray family. With Lucile's permission, he stole this gold from the Braithwaites, and stole some more gold from his own family, in order to fund abolitionist groups. Believing that the other stole their treasure, the two families became locked in a vicious blood feud.

The abolition of slavery in 1865, following the defeat of the South in the Civil War, badly damaged the Braithwaites. They lost a large amount of their wealth, as did the Grays. At some point prior to 1898, the Braithwaites turned to producing and selling moonshine, and became the dominant producer in Lemoyne, due to Maggie Fike, who used to control the moonshine business in the region, disappearing in 1892 after being caught and nearly killed by revenue agents. They also recruited Maggie's former cook, Danny-Lee Caton, who was looking for protection, to oversee their production.

Events of Red Dead Online

A Life of 'Shine

In 1898, Maggie finds a new partner to help her renew her moonshine business, and learns about the Braithwaites' operation. She has the protagonist sabotage them, leading to Bartholomew Braithwaite, Danny-Lee, and several armed men confronting them at their shack in an attempt to intimidate them, but their threats are waved off by Maggie.

Later, Maggie arranges a meeting with Bartholomew and Danny-Lee under the guise of making amends by providing a shipment of moonshine, and anonymously tips off Reid Hixon. When Bartholomew and Danny-Lee arrive at the meeting place to find no one, they are quickly held at gunpoint by Hixon's revenue agents. However, Bartholomew claims to have hired gunmen nearby and bribes Hixon to let him go, leaving Danny-Lee to be arrested.

Events of Red Dead Redemption 2

In 1899, Arthur Morgan first encounters the Braithwaites when Beau Gray sends him to the Braithwaite Manor to deliver a love letter to Penelope Braithwaite. She sends a letter of her own back, which tells Beau that she plans on taking part in a women’s suffrage rally. Upon hearing this, Beau begs Arthur to convince Penelope not to do it, saying it will endanger her life. She insists on participating, and so Arthur ends up driving the stagecoach in order to give her some protection.

Hosea Matthews and Arthur later go to the Braithwaite Manor to try and sell back some of the moonshine they stole from the Lemoyne Raiders. The family are initially hostile and point guns at the pair, until Catherine Braithwaite steps in and pays them $10 for it, on the condition that they give it out for free at the Gray-owned saloon in Rhodes.

On Catherine's behalf, Sean MacGuire and Arthur later burn down the Gray family's tobacco fields at Caliga Hall, being promised gold in return. The Van der Linde gang simultaneously makes a deal with Tavish Gray to steal the Braithwaites' prized horses, a job which is carried out by Arthur, John Marston rand Javier Escuella. Realizing that they have been played by the gang, the Braithwaites kidnap Jack Marston from them. In response to this, the gang launches a major assault on the manor.

Upon arrival, they are met by all the sons of Catherine, as well as their cousins and hired guns. When the Braithwaites refuse to give Jack back to the gang, the standoff descends into a large gunfight between the Braithwaite family and the gang. After all the Braithwaites are killed, the gang searches the manor for Catherine, but reinforcements soon arrive, forcing Arthur and other gang members to fight them off. Arthur and John eventually manage to break into the room where Catherine is hiding with her last remaining sons, Gareth and Gerald, whom they kill. Catherine then refuses to say where Jack is, so Dutch van der Linde drags her down the stairs, while the rest of the gang set the manor ablaze. Once outside, Dutch questions Catherine again on Jack's whereabouts and threatens to kill her, so she finally reveals that he has been sold to Angelo Bronte in Saint Denis. The gang then departs as Catherine runs back into the burning manor in tears, and is burned alive.

Penelope later writes to Arthur, asking him to come to Braithwaite Manor. There, she asks him o take her to the Rhodes train station, where she and Beau will elope together. Arthur takes her to Beau, whereupon the two embrace and talk about how they cannot wait to go to Boston together. While buying train tickets, they are spotted by Beau's cousins Iain and Scott Gray, who try to drag him away, but Arthur steps in and knocks them unconscious. The three then board the train, but more problems arise: some of Penelope's relatives noticed that she took several valuable gems before embarking, and chase the train on horseback, forcing Arthur to fight them off. The train eventually arrives at the Riggs Station, where Penelope and Beau disembark and, after thanking Arthur for his help, get on a stagecoach bound for Boston.

Members

Family Tree

   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Catherine Braithwaite RDR2.jpg
Catherine Braithwaite
(?-1899)
   
   
   
   
   
   
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Gertrude RDR2.jpg
Gertrude Braithwaite
   
   
BartholomewBraithwaite-1899.png
Bartholomew Braithwaite
(?-1899)
   
   
   
   
Gerald-Braithwaite-rdr2.jpeg
Gerald Braithwaite
(?-1899)
   
   
Gareth-Braithwaite rdr2.jpg
Gareth Braithwaite
(?-1899)
   
   

Associates

Mission appearances

Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Online

Trivia

  • In Undead Nightmare, during the mission "Curious Tales from Blackwater", Mordecai Robbard's niece mentions a Mister Braithwaite, who had been dead a year as of 1911, but it is unknown if he was related to the wider Braithwaite family.
  • In the post-Civil War era, longstanding personal disputes were often exacerbated by newfound political divisions arising from Reconstruction policies, through which the federal government tried to rebuild the devastated South and install local politicians that were friendly to Northern demands. Many wealthy families (represented by the Braithwaites) tried to re-consolidate their power along traditional Southern lines, while others (represented by the Grays) sought new opportunities in aligning with Northern Reconstruction governments. Hence, the Braithwaites ally with the Lemoyne Raiders, while the Grays operate the local law enforcement.
  • Geographically, politically, and socioeconomically, the Braithwaite-Gray feud shares many similarities to the real-world Jones-Liddell feud among wealthy plantation dynasties of postwar Louisiana. The Liddells opposed the local Reconstruction government, while the Jones family supported it.
  • Beau and Penelope are not the first lovers from the opposing families. Douglas Gray and Lucile Braithwaite had a similar relationship, which ultimately caused the feud to happen.
  • It appears that the Braithwaite family's financial situation in 1899 is unstable and as they appear to owe debts to Angelo Bronte.[3]
    • This is also hinted by the state of their plantation, as many of the cornfields seem to be unmaintained.

References

  1. In 1899, during the mission "Blood Feuds, Ancient and Modern", Catherine Braithwaite says the family have lived at the manor "for 120 years".
  2. The Course of True Love V
  3. Letter to Angelo Bronte

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