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                                       LEMUEL BROWN
                                    Cook County, Illinois


Information contributed for use in Cook County ILGenWeb by
        Sherri Hessick, added May 2001.


Source: Album of Genealogy and Biography, Cook County,
Illinois with Portraits 3rd ed. revised and extended
(Chicago: Calumet Book & Engraving Co., 1895), pp. 81-82

LEMUEL BROWN, an early settler of Cook County, who had
formerly been a pioneer in Michigan, was born September 15,
1815, at Berkshire, Tioga County, New York, and died at his
home in Lemont, Illinois, August 15, 1894.  His father,
Daniel Brown, was a canal contractor and farmer, and gave
his son better educational opportunities than fall to the
lot of the average framer’s son.  In 1826 the family moved
from Chestnut Ridge, near Niagara Falls, New York, to Ann
Arbor, Michigan.  Here he attended the famous university of
that state four years, and started out at the age of
seventeen well equipped for the battle of life.

He spent a year in selling goods for his brother, N. J.
Brown, in Ionia County, Michigan, and then opened a trading
establishment of his own in Clinton County, Michigan, the
first store kept by a white man in that county.  Most of his
customers were Indians, and he did a thriving business in
exchanging blankets, tobacco and other commodities for furs,
skins and game.  At this time speculation in western lands
was very active, and Mr. Brown entered into several land
deals which yielded him a handsome profit.  After remaining
in Clinton County a year, he went to Shiawassee County, in
the same state, where he continued to deal in lands.  He
became the first Recorder of that county, as well as the
first Postmaster within its borders.  The first court for
Shiawassee County was held in the ballroom of the tavern of
which he was proprietor.  In a corner of this building he
maintained a bank and kept his Recorder’s office.  He
engaged in farming here, and was a friend and assistant of
the young man who afterward became Governor Parsons, of

Mr. Brown came to Cook County in 1838, remaining in Chicago
two years and settling at Lemont in 1840.  For twelve
consecutive years he held the offices of Postmaster and
Justice of the Peace of Lemont, being the second Postmaster
at that place.  He was appointed, in 1846, one of the
commissioners to secure the organization of every township
in Cook County, but declined to serve.  He was, however,
Chairman of the meeting in his home town, and suggested the
name which was adopted–La Mont, since corrupted to Lemont.
The name of Athens, first adopted by this place, was
abandoned because another town in the state had prior claim
to that name.

In 1853 Mr. Brown moved to Clinton County, Iowa, where he
served as Justice of the Peace three years and Sheriff two
years.  For fifteen years preceding the year 1873 he was
engaged in farming in that county, and removed thence to
Kansas, where he was engaged in farming and stock-raising
for ten years.  In this he was very successful, and produced
in a single year eighteen hundred bushels of wheat and
fifteen hundred bushels each of corn and oats.  In one year
he produced four thousand bushels of corn.

In 1883 he returned to Lemont to pass the balance of his
years in quiet retirement, and enjoyed for eleven years the
fruits of a long life of honest toil, approaching close to
the age of seventy-nine years.  He was married in Shiawassee
County, Michigan, February 11, 1838, to Miss Catharine
Lyman, a native of North Branford, Massachusetts, who still
survives.  Six of their eight children grew to maturity and
are now living, filling places of usefulness.  Belle, the
eldest, is the wife of Volney Chapman.  Daniel L., who
married Alvesta Scott, is the author of Scott Brown’s system
of shorthand writing, and is well known as a publisher in
New York.  Ida is the wife of William Lambertson.  Katharine
A. married David S. Geer, an attorney of Chicago.  Lemuel L.
married Ida E. Derby, and is a business man in Chicago.
Frank Lyman Brown married Harriet Readshaw, and resides in
New York City.

Mr. Brown adhered to the Democratic party from his youth
until the administration of President Buchanan.  He was a
supporter of Abraham Lincoln, and continued from 1860 until
his death to affiliate with the Republicans.  He sympathized
with the abolition movement, and was an advocate of
temperance, never using liquor except when prescribed by a
physician.  Throughout his life he was active in the labors
of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and wherever he lived was
regarded as one of the most useful members of that body.

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