Biography of Elisha T. Brown
Alpine, Kent County, MI Biographies



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Elisha T. Brown was born at Medina, Orleans Co., N. Y., June 25, 1828; is son of Avery and Melinda (Hatch) Brown. Avery Brown was a tailor by trade and pursued his business at Medina, and afterward at Rochester, N. Y., where he was established for some years in the old Arcade. A memorable incident of the period of his residence at the latter place was the famous leap of Sam Patch from the bridge above the fails of the Genesee. Mrs. Brown walked across on the stringers of the bridge long before its completion. Mr. Brown moved with his family to Genesee, N. Y., where he was engaged 18 years in the pursuit of his business. Meanwhile his oldest son came to Michigan, and in 1848 he followed with the remainder of his family and located on the southwestern quarter of sec. 33, on 120 acres of land, a gift of Wm. Hatch, Mrs. Brown's brother, to her, in fulfillment of a promise in behalf of her sons, - that when they were large enough to work he would give her a farm for them. The family lived on it 14 years, and at her death. in 1862, it was sold and the proceeds divided among the heirs, Mr. Brown died Aug. 23, 1869, at Chester, Ottawa Co., at the residence of his son. Wm, Avery Brown, with whom he lived after the death of his wife. Mrs. Brown's ancestors were descended from the Pilgrims who came to this country in the Mayflower. Mr. Brown, of this sketch, learned his father's trade and followed it ahout eight years. He was married July 1, 1851, at Houenye Falls, Monroe Co., N. Y., to Laura, daughter of John and Martha (Bartlett) Brodish, Her father was a native of New York and died in 1867, at Honeoye Falls; her mother was born in Massachusetts and died in March, 1863. The latter was the first white child born in Ontario Co., N. Y. In 1852 Mr. Brown bought 80 acres of land on sec. 29, which he has ever since occupied. At the time of the purchase the land was in a perfectly wild state, without a foot cleared for any purpose. Mr. Brown at once set about improving space sufficient for the erection of a house and built a dwelling 20x26 feet, which the family inhabited 28 years and where all their children were born except the eldest. Mr. Brown has added to his estate until it aggregates 110 acres of choice land with 70 in advanced improvement. In the course of his management and efforts to reclaim Kent county from the wilderness he has cleared about 400 acres of land. In polities he is a Repuplican and has served his tp. in nearly all its offices; has been Treasurer six years; Highway Com. two terms; and in 1881 was elected Justice of the Peace. Mr. and Mrs. Brown have been members of the Congrregational Church of Alpine and Walker since its organization. They have five children, born as follows Julia M., March 29, 1852; Francis E., Dec. 22, 1854; George H, Feb. 20, 1858; Martha M., June 28, 1860; J. Warren. May 13, 1863. Mr. Brown is engaged in the sale of agricnltural implements at No. 14 West Bridge street, Grand Rapids. His portrait is presented on another page.

History of Kent County, Michigan
Chas C. Chapman & Company
Chicago 1881.