SAMUEL BARTHOLOMEW BBOWN,
justice of the peace in Newton, Illinois, has been prominent in the affairs of this section of the country for many years. He has been always among the first to speak in favor of any measure conducive to the growth of the town, and in his various services in public positions has won a reputation for scrupulous honesty that could not be excelled. For over thirty years he has been treasurer of schools, and under his careful management the school funds, at times rather meager, have been stretched to meet all emergencies.
Samuel B. Brown was born in Scottsville, Kentucky, on the 1st of March, 1829. His father Ailsey Brown, a native of North Carolina, born March 10, 1791. AIlsey Brown came to Kentucky when a young man, and here he met his future wife, Nancy Childers. She was a relative of the Bartholomew family. Eleven children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Brown, Judge Brown being the seventh of the number. Mr. Brown spent his life, in the farming industry, and won for his family a comfortable competence from the rich Kentucky soil. He died in 1864, and his wife passed away in 1878. The early years of Samuel Brown were spent in Kentucky, where
he was sent to school in the winter and worked in his father's fields in the summer. His education was received partly at a subscription school and partly at the public school. He finally completed his sehool days with a high school course. His young manhood was spent in Kentucky, where he was in the mercantile business. He had a good sized store, well equipped for the general country trade, and was doing a thriving business when the war times came along and threw everything into a state of unrest. He along with others lost greatly through this state of affairs. At one time his store was raided and stripped absolutely bare, but the despoilers had no intention of leaving him unrecompensed, and to that end left a great heap of bills on the counter. The only difficulty was that these bills were with one exception Confederate money, and therefore wholly worthless. The only United States greenback among them was one fifty dollar bill, so Mr. Brown was the loser by several hundreds of dollars.
In 1868 Mr. Brown came to Illinois and located in Newton, where for two years he taught sehool. He immediately showed an interest in public affairs and was soon made county assessor, which office he held for some time. A little later he was elected county surveyor and continued in this position for eight years. Both of these offices carried much responsibility, and little honor, but the people of his neighborhood were not insensible to his worth, and in 1881 honored him by electing him justice of the peace, a position that he has filled without a break until the present day. It was at about the same time that he was made treasurer of schools, and the way in which he has carried out the duties of this office have won him the gratitude of the populace. The time that is not given to public affairs he has devoted to the mercantile business, having been connected with va.rious houses both here and in Kentucky.
Mr. Brown has been twice married, his first wife, whom he married in 1859, being Anna Staley, a native of Tennessee. She became the mother of eight children, four of whom are living: Lina is Mrs. Sangster; Samuel C. is in the hardware business in Terre Haute, Indiana; Alsey Oscar is a Presbyterian minister of New Orleans; and Mittie Virginia is now Mrs. J. E. O. Clark, of Newton, The mother of this family died in 1873, and in 1875 Mr. Brown was married to Sally Word, of Tennessee, and they became the parents of one daughter, Bessie, who is Mrs. W. G. Austin, of Effingham, Illinois. Mr. Brown lost his second wife on the 5th of May, 1911.
Mr. Brown is a Democrat in politics and is one of the enthusiastic believers in the victory of his party in the elections of 1912. He is a loyal supporter of the Methodist Episcopal church, and acted as trustee for this body for some years. His fraternal affiliations are with the Masons.