Delaware County, PA History Book - 1914

This branch of the Brown Family was for many years seated in Yorkshire, England, and while on a visit to the old family home, Arthur Brown occupied the seat in church that for fifty years had been his grandfather's. This old gentleman, Benjamin Brown, never left his native shire, both he and wife living there until a good old age, leaving issue.

George Brown, son of Benjamin Brown, was born in Yorkshire, England, October 21, 1831, and there received in private schools of high degree, a liberal education. He became a woolen manufacturer of England and on coming to the United States, established in the same business in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where after a successful business life he yet resides aged eighty-three years.

He espoused the Tory cause in England and in Lancaster became a supporter of the Republican party, serving as city councilman. He wife, Esther Beardsal, was the daughter of a Yorkshire woolen manufacturer; children: Thomas, married Mary Horrock, and resides in Mount Joy, Lancaster county; Arthur, of whom further; Walter, married Izella Garside; Sarah, married Joseph Battye, whom she survives; Benjamin, married Annie Henry; Emma married John Zellers; George married Annie Keller; Annie married Abrahm Shelley, whom she survives; Elmer, married Sarah Heilig, deceased; Lilly, died unmarried. The living all reside in Mount Joy, Lancaster county. The mother died in Philadelphia, aged thirty-eight years, a member of the Established Church of England; Mr. Brown is a vestryman.

Arthur Brown, son of George and Esther (Beardsal) Brown, was born in Yorkshire, England, August 25, 1857. He was brought to this country when an infant by his parents, who after a brief residence in Trenton, New Jersey, moved to Upper Darby township, Delaware county, thence to Mount Joy, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Arthur Brown began his education in the public schools of Upper Darby at age five years, continuing and finishing at the Episcopal academy, Juniper and Locust Streets, Philadelphia. He began working in his father's woolen mill, continuing until thoroughly mastering the details of woolen manufacture. He then in association with his brothers, Thomas and Walter, founded a corporation known as George Brown's Sons, establishing successful manufacturers of woolen goods. They then moved to Mount Joy, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania where their main plan is now located. They established a branch mill at Lenni, Pennsylvania, which is under the direct management of Arthur Brown.

Mr. Brown is a member of George W. Bartram Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons; is a Republican in politics and both he and his wife are members of the Episcopal Church.

He married Anna Browne, born in Philadelphia, August 18, 1861, daughter of John Browne, a retired farmer, now living in Drexel Hill, Delaware County, and his wife, Anna Freyburg. They had issue: Anna, wife of Arthur Brown; Eliza, married Charles Drewes and resides at Darby, Delaware county. Mr. And Mrs. Brown have five children, one daughter and four sons: Anna S., Maurice, Lawrence, Edwin, John.

Lancaster History Book

Biographical Annals of Lancaster County, PA - 1903

GEORGE BROWN, the founder of the extensive cotton and woolen mills located at Mt. Joy, Lancaster county, has made a life-long study of the manufacture of textile fabrics. He was born in Yorkshire, England, in October, 1831, son of Benjamin Brown, who operated the first power carding machine ever constructed.

Mr. Brown came to America in 1855, and first located in Trenton, N.J. He was married in his native county to Miss Esther Beardsell, also of Yorkshire, who died in 1873, leaving ten children, viz.: Thomas J., Arthur, Walter G., Sarah (widow of Joseph A. Battye), Benjamin W., Emma (wife of J. B. S. Zeller), George H., Annie E. (widow of Abraham K. Shelly), Elmer E. and Lilly A. (who died in infancy). The six sons, under the firm name of George Brown's Sons, now conduct the plant at Mt. Joy, which was established in 1883.

THOMAS J. BROWN, the eldest of the above named children, was born in Yorkshire, England, Sept. 23, 1855. He received his education, in the public schools of Philadelphia, in private schools in Delaware, and at the University of Pennsylvania. However, he was but a boy when he entered a textile mill in Philadelphia, and he learned the business in all its branches. At the age of twenty-four years he was appointed overseer of the carding department of one of the woolen mills of the city, and was later promoted, in turn, to all the positions of trust and responsibility in the factory. In 1888, in company with his brothers Arthur and Walter G., he established a cotton and woolen mill in the Quaker City, which he operated until 1891, the year of his removal to Mt. Joy, where he has had charge of the office work of George Brown's Sons up to the present time. He is a member of the New England Cotton Manufacturers Association. Mr. Brown is a Republican in political sentiment. He has shown himself public-spirited in the interests of his adopted place, having been a member of the school board for the past eight years, and for six years its president.

Thomas J. Brown was married, in Philadelphia, April 12, 1879, to Miss Mary A. Horrocks, and to this union have been born three children, viz.: Esther M., Mabel (who died in 1899) and Thomas J. Brown. The family attend the Episcopal Church.

ARTHUR BROWN, the second son of George Brown, was born in England Aug. 31, 1857, and was educated in the public and private schools of Philadelphia. Like his brother Thomas J., he began his business education in a textile factory in that city, and at the age of twenty-one years became overseer of the carding department, later filling a number of other responsible positions with the same firm. He was one of the three Brown brothers who in 1888 formed a firm and started in business on their own account, in Philadelphia, and he continued in that relation until he came to Mt. Joy to enter the establishment there, having charge of the carding, spinning, etc.

Arthur Brown was united in marriage, in 1879, in Delaware county, Pa., with Miss Anna L. Browne, and six children have crowned this union, viz.: Anna L., Arthur Maurice, Lawrence M., Laura M. (deceased), Edwin L. and John T. The family attend the Episcopal Church.

WALTER G. BROWN was born in Trenton, N. J., Feb. 23, 1860, was educated in Philadelphia, and early entered a textile mill. He soon rose to the position of overseer of the carding department, and held other posts of trust and responsibility. In 1888, in connection with his elder brothers, Thomas J. and Arthur, he embarked in the manufacturing business in Philadelphia, and, like them, he is now identified with the concern at Mt. Joy, having charge of No. 2 Mill.

In I887 Walter G. Brown was married, in Delaware county, Pa., to Miss Izella Garside, and this union has been graced with three children, Harry G., Elmer E. and Russel H. (the last named deceased). This family are also united with the Episcopal Church. Mr. Brown has already won a place for himself as one of the most progressive men in the borough. In politics he is a Republican.

BENJAMIN W. BROWN, the fourth of the six brothers, was born in Delaware county, Pa., March 12, 1863, was educated in Philadelphia, and there learned the textile business. In 1883 he came to Mt. Joy with his father and his interests have ever since been centered in the great factory, where he has charge of the finishing department. Mr. Brown was married in Mt. Joy to Miss Annie Henery, and to this union have been born two children, Laura D. and George. The family attend the Episcopal Church. In politics Mr. Brown is a Republican and as the candidate of that party he has been elected a member of the borough-council, of which he is at this time president.

GEORGE H. BROWN, the fifth of the brothers who constitute the firm of George Brown's Sons, was born Nov. 3, 1867, in Philadelphia, was there educated, and in 1883 came to Mt. Joy. He has charge of the weaving in the factory, and has developed conspicuous ability in the management of that department. He was married in Mt. Joy borough to Miss Annie Keller, and they have a family of three children, George H., Milroy and Beatrice. This family are also members of the Episcopal Church, and in politics George H. Brown is a Republican.

ELMER E. BROWN, the youngest member of the firm of George Brown's Sons, was born in Philadelphia Oct. 21, 1871, and was educated in the public schools of that city and Mt. Joy, having come to the latter place in 1883, when about twelve years of age. There he learned the art of manufacturing textile fabrics under his father, and, being a young man of ability, was soon admitted into partnership and given a responsible position in the weaving department as an associate with his brother George. Elmer E. Brown was married, in Mt. Joy, to Miss Sallie Heilig, and three children brighten this home, Elmer E., Elsie M. and Russel H. This family are also members of the Episcopal Church. Mr. Brown is a Republican in politics.

(Source: Biographical Annals of Lancaster County, Pa., Beers, 1903, pp. 320-3.)