Thomas J. Brown
Sophia Annie Stinchcomb Brown
Thomas J. Brown was born near the village of Bellbrook, Greene County, Ohio, August 16th, 1833 and died on April 2nd, 1913 in his home in Waynesville, Warren County, Ohio at the age of 79. He was the son of David W. and Lydia Bowser Brown who emigrated from Bedford County, Pennsylvania and settled in Greene County at a very early period and reared ten children.
When he was 14 years old, Mr. Brown suffered the loss of his hearing, but he adjusted to his affliction and did not let the handicap diminish his accomplishments in life. He became especially interested and well versed in science and journalism. He recieved his education at Wittenberg College in Springfield, Ohio where he delved into scientific works and literature. He developed an interest in geology in which he became recognized scholar. He was associated with the noted Professor Edward Orton of Ohio State University, and took part in his geological survey of Warren and Greene Counties.
Mr. Brown also developed a great interest in archaeology and loved to particularly study the ancient moundbuilders, especially at Fort Ancient, south of Wayensville. Over the years he gathered a large collection of geological and archaelogical specimens.
On May 23, 1861 in St. Barnabas Church, Baltimore, he married Sophia Annie Stinchcomb (d. March 13, 1911). The couple lived on"Cottonwood Farm" near Ferry, Greene County, Ohio and there their two daughters were born: Annie Urith and Mary Thomas. In 1878 the family moved to Waynesville. For more than a quarter of a century Mr. Brown was the editor and publisher of Waynesville's Miami-Gazette weekly newspaper. His wife Sophia was the Associate Editor of the paper. She was the cultural and literary writer for the paper. The family were members of St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Waynesville, see St. Mary's Episcopal Church. Their two daughters: Annie U. and Mary T. never married. In their retirement they lived at the Friends Boarding Home. Both sisters were teachers of disabled children. They both taught at the Ohio State Institute for Feeble Minded in Columbus. Previous to her employment at the Ohio State Insititute for the Feeble Minded, Annie U. taught at the old OSSO (The Ohio Soldier's and Sailor's Orphans Home) in Xenia, Ohio. Annie U.'s interest in helping the disabled continued into her retirement. She became an accredited Braille transciber. She herself had become disabled due to an accident and was confined to the Friends Home, but this was work that she could do and was glad to do.
Mary T. Brown leased the Miami-Gazette from her parents and was the publisher for a while in partnership with Adelbert M. McKay.
Below are a photograph of Annie U. (left) and Mary T. Brown (right) in their youth:
The Brown family home: