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Commemorative Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Thomas Brown


THOMAS BROWN, a prosperous farmer and influential citizen of Raleigh township, is a son of Jonathan and Isabella (Stephenson) Brown, both natives of Scotland, and was but a babe when the family crossed the ocean, from Penicuick, Scotland, where he had been born April 25, 1848.  He was but two and a half years old when his father brought him to Raleigh township, and left him with an uncle, Charles Clark, of the County of Leeds, Scotland, who died in Chatham, Ontario, in April 1898.  The vessel on which Mr. and Mrs. Brown crossed the ocean was shipwrecked on the banks of Newfoundland, and Mrs. Brown was drowned.  The father for his second wife, married Mary Ferguson, by whom he had four children, namely:  Alexander, who is an attorney of Detroit, Michigan; Charles, a farmer in Howard township, County of Kent; James, a hardware merchant of Thamesville, Ontario; and John, a farmer of Howard township.  The father now lives retired on a farm in Howard township, and though past eighty, having been born December 25th, 1821, enjoys good health and is quite active.
 
Thomas Brown has practically spent his life in Raleigh, with his uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. Clark, and his education was received in the excellent schools of the township.  After he had attained manhood's estate he purchased the Clark homestead of seventy-eight acres.  The first house in which he lived was made of logs, and only one-half was floored, with split logs.  His present home, which he built in 1898, is one of the finest modern residences in that vicinity, furnished complete with every modern convenience. Mr. Brown engages in general farming, and makes his land yield good profits upon his investment.  His aunt, Mrs. Clark, makes her home with him, and although advanced in year she retains her faculties to a remarkable degree, and enjoys relating incidents of the early days of privation.  In politics Mr. Brown in a Grit, but has never aspired to office, his private affairs consuming all his time and attention.  He and his wife are consistent members of the Methodist Church.
 
On December 27th, 1876, Mr. Brown was united in marriage with Lavera Morden, a native of Hyde Park, County of Middlesex, Onario, and to this union have been born:  Isabella married Sidney Aldis, of Raleigh township; Ethel married George E. Jordan of Raleigh township, and has one daughter, Lavera; Gertrude and Thomas are at home.  Mrs. Brown was born September 20th, 1858, at Hyde Park, daughter of David C. and Margaret (Brown) Morden, the former of whom was born in August 1831 in Hyde Park, the latter a native of Kent, in which county they were married.  Mr.. Morden came to Kent in 1868, locating first in Raleigh township, and thence moving to Chatham townshhip, where he engaged in farming.  Mrs. Morden passed away in 1882, at the age of forty-four years.  She was a member of the Methodist Church, to which Mr. Morden also belongs.  They were the parents of four children:  Lavera, Mrs. Brown; Laura, wife of Herman Schneider, of Detroit; Agnes, who married William Farr, of Sarnia, Ontario; and May, who married William Nichols, of Chatham township. 
 
Possessed of intelligence, enterprise and thrift, Mr. Brown has been able to grasp every opportunity offered, and to raise himself up on the ladder of fortune.  While doing so he has not neglected social virtues, but has made many friends, among whom he is deservedly popular.
 
p.311, 312

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