History of Erie County, Pennsylvania, 1884

R. B. Brown Biography

R.B. Brown, editor and publisher of the daily and weekly Observer. Erie, was born in Huntingdon Co., Penn., Nov. 9, 1837. son of J.D. and Jane (Porter) Brown, the former, who had been a school teacher. was a native of Ireland; the latter a native of Penn., of Scotch-Irish descent. Our subject acquired a common school education in his native county, and also attended the Cumberland Valley Institute, Penn. Choosing the occupation of printer, he served his apprenticeship in the Globe office, Huntingdon, and then taught school for several years; was for four years editor of the Brownsville, Fayette Co. Times, and in 1863 sold out and bought the Clarion, Penn., Democrat, which he continued to publish until 1877.

In 1862, Mr. Brown enlisted in the 155th P.V.I., Co. E, and was promoted to Second Lieutenant; he also served in a Penn. regiment during Morgan's raid.

In 1868, he was elected to the Lower House of Legislature from the district composed of Jefferson and Clarion Cos., and was re-elected in 1869. At the commencement of his 2d term, he received his party support for Speaker of the House. In 1872, served as Chairman of the Democratic State Convention; was Presidential Elector in 1876 from his district. Coming to Erie City in 1878, he bought the Weekly Observer, a paper started in 1830; he established the Daily Observer in 1881. Mr. Brown gives his personal attention to every department of the office, and publishes a paper satisfactory to its patrons.

Source: History of Erie County, Pennsylvania; City of Erie; Chicago; Warner, Beers & Co.; 1884

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