CHARLES P. BROWN, who for more than twenty years has been identified with the commercial activities of Atwater, was born in Montgomery county, Illinois, in March, 1867. His parents were Caswell and Agnes (Fullerton) Brown, the father a native of Tennessee and the mother of Scotland. During his early manhood Mr. Brown worked on the steamboats but later withdrew from this occupation and coming to Montgomery county, Illinois, bought some land, engaging in farming from that time until his death on the 18th of January, 1881. The mother passed away when our subject was in his second year.
The boyhood and youth of Charles P. Brown were spent on the farm where he was born, attending the district schools of the vicinity where he mastered the elementary branches, completing his education in the public schools of the elementary branches, completing his education in the public schools of Girard. Having been trained from his earliest boyhood in agricultural pursuits, he naturally chose, when becoming self-supporting, the occupation for which he was best adapted and for three years worked as a farm hand. During this time he acquired sufficient capital to enable him to farm for himself, so he rented some land that he cultivated for two years. At the expiration of that period he decided that he preferred a commercial to an agricultural career and coming to Atwater he bought the interest of D. J. Magee in the mercantile business owned by him and Mr. Williamson. Mr. Brown was still very young, having just attained his majority, and at that time did not have very much money, the united capital of himself and partner amounting to only four hundred dollars. At the end of eighteen months he bought Mr. Williamson's interest, continuing the business alone until 1901, when he sold it to George P. Rogers. On the 23d of July, 1902, he became associated with R. J. Herrick and they bought out Mr. Rogers, and for a year and a half thereafter conducted the business together. At the expiration of that time Mr. Brown bought out his partner's interest and has ever since operated the store as exclusive owner. His efforts have been rewarded with a goodly measure of success and he not only has a large stock of goods but owns the building in which his store is located, a fine residence property in Atwater and one hundred and five acres of land in Shaws Point township adjacent to Atwater. He knew nothing of the business when he first became identified with it as a proprietor of th store, but has diligently and intelligently applied himself to acquiring a thorough, practical knowledge of every detail. His well chosen stock, accommodating manner and general method of conducting his business has won for him a large patronage, which he has been able to retain. Mr. Brown is interested in various enterprises of the town, being a stockholder and director of the Bank of Atwater and he is also a stockholder of the Atwater Coal Co.
Mr. Brown was first married November 30, 1894, to Miss Josephine E. Vignos, who died in October of the following year. On the 27th of April, 1898, he was again married, his second union being with Miss Laura Sharp, a daughter of Benjamin and Malinda (Tite) Sharp, natives of Tennessee. The father came to Macoupin county in a very early day, and bought a farm that he improved and cultivated during the remainder of his life. Here he passed away in May, 1908, having survived his wife for twenty years, her death occurring in the month of December, 1888. Mr. and Mrs. Brown are the parents of two children: Irwin S., who is nine years of age; and Vivian M., who is seven.
Mr. and Mrs. Brown affiliate with the Christian Church of Atwater , and he is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. In politics he is a democrat. He is one of the progressive citizens of the community and always gives his support and cooperation to the development of the various public utilities.