Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown. Page: 827 of 894
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INDIAN WARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.
along paths that lead to the highest good; to instruct
the individual soul, in order that, according
to its capacity, it may best perform its part here in
this work-a-day world, and fit itself for whatever
higher destiny it is, by its inherent composition,
capable of attaining under the general plan of
This office of history of which I speak is mainly
to be accomplished through biography.
The life and character of the subject of this
memoir, the late Col. J. M. Brown, of Galveston,
are replete with useful lessons. Starting without
the aid of powerful friends or means, his life was
a successful one in the highest and truest sense,
and he has left to his descendants a heritage that
they prize more than the ample fortune that came
to him as a partial reward of his efforts and that
he has bequeathed to them.
The Galveston Daily News, of Thursday, December
26,1895, says of him in its editorial columns:"In
the death of Col. J. M. Brown, which occurred
last Tuesday night, Galveston lost one of
her most successful and influential business men
and Texas one of her most enterprising citizens.
Scarcely an enterprise of importance has been inaugurated
in Galveston during the past forty-odd
years that has not been assisted to success through
the splendid business judgment and executive ability
of Col. Brown." * *
Col. Brown was born in New York City on the
22d day of September, 1821, and was one of a
family of sixteen children, all of whom preceded
him to the grave. His parents, John M. and
Hannah (Kroutz) Brown were natives of Holland.
They were well-to-do and bestowed upon him
every care that affection could dictate, but, while
he returned their love, he was eager to push out
into the busy world, and this spirit of adventure
becoming too strong for him to control, he, at
twelve years of age, left home without their knowledge,
and it was more than two years before they
located him and brought him back. He remained
with his parents for a time, and then again left,
going to the western portion of the State, where he
secured employment driving a canal-boat along the
Erie canal. During those days he had Charley
Mallory, afterwards of the famous Mallory Steamship
Line, as a copartner in driving canal-boats.
After his'desire for adventure had been partly
appeased, his father put him at the brick-mason's
trade, at which he served a full term of apprenticeship.
He also acquired considerable ability as
an architect, and in furnishing estimates on work.
Thus equipped, he started South, and the diary
of his travels shows that at different points south of
the Ohio river, he engaged in courthouse, cistern
and jail work, taking contracts, and furnishing
estimates. He arrived in Galveston in 1842 or
1843. He erected the first brick jail on Galveston
Island. Other monuments of his architectural and
mechanical skill are the old market house, the
cathedral, and the home in which he died, on the
northeast corner of Twenty-fourth street and
Broadway, that being, it is said, the first brick
residence erected in this State. He built it in 1859,
and some of the parlor furniture is the same that
he selected in New York, after completing his new
home. Some time before the war he formed a
copartnership with Mr. Stephen Kirkland and
engaged in the hardware business under the firm
name of Brown
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Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown., book, 1880~; Austin, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/m1/827/: accessed September 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .