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Name Orlando Brown
Born 1801
Deceased 1867
Notes Orlando was an editor and newspaper owner. He was born in Frankfort and educated at home by his mother Margaretta Brown and by private tutors. Like his father, John Brown, Orlando attended Princeton. He graduated in 1820. He read medicine with his Uncle Dr. Preston Brown but soon gave it up. He then attended Transylvania University, receiving his law degree in 1823. For five years, Brown practiced law in Alabama.

After much searching for a profession, Orlando became an editor. Orlando founded the Commonwealth, a Frankfort newspaper, with A.G. Hodges in 1833. He served as its editor for ten years. The paper was supportive of the Whig Party. In 1840, he edited The Campaign, a short-lived newspaper that was a platform for the Whig Party. Orlando was an ardent supporter of the Union and the Constitution. It is not surprising that in 1862, during the U.S. Civil War, Orlando resumed as editor of The Frankfort Commonwealth for seven months. The paper favored the preservation of the Union.

Like his brother Mason, Orlando served as Kentucky's Secretary of State. He held the post in 1848 during Governor John J. Crittenden's administration. Soon after, in 1849, Orlando became the Commissioner of Indian Affairs in President Zachary Taylor's administration. However, he was unhappy in the position and resigned in 1850.

Associated Records

Image of 2007.01.0002 - Letter

2007.01.0002 - Letter

Letter from Orlando Brown (1801-1867) to Euphemia P. Mason (1794-1855). Writing to his cousin in New York City, an eight-year-old Orlando comments on his schoolmaster, Mr. Holroyd, and describes his little sister. Orlando also describes his own personality and how much he wants to see New York. [Transcription] Frankfort My dear Cousin Euphemia I wish to write you a letter and I am now going to try if I can do it. I go to a school to a man named Mr. Holroyd who would be a good Master if he was not a little too lazy. I am sometimes very bad and sometimes very good, but I think I would always be a Clever Fellow if I had a good school. I want to see New York very badly indeed. I wish

Image of 2012.01.0036 - Journal

2012.01.0036 - Journal

A handwritten commonplace book of poetry, containing 52 poems. Margaretta seems to have written many of these poems, as she arranged them chronologically and titled the journal as a piece of juvenilia, or works of a young person. However, she likely copied some of the poems from magazines. Subjects range from patriotic declarations to observations on current events to extracts from letters to friends. Margaretta began the journal in 1785, when she was just 13 years old, and lived in New York City. The last poem entered is from 1807. There are 1-134 numbered pages. There is poetry written on pages 1-113 (except pages 37-38 which are missing-they appear to have been ripped out of the book)

Image of 2015.02.0001 - Journal

2015.02.0001 - Journal

A 153-page journal kept by Orlando Brown when he was in college at Princeton University. Orlando chronicles his journey to New York state and New York City. His trip takes place while he is on a break from school. He is at first prejuidiced of many Yankees that he meets but determines at the end of the journal that his mind has been freed of such prejuidices. He is traveling with fellow students Clay and Macon. While in NYC, he sees Aaron Burr on the street and discusses how he was a great man. He also discusses buying dueling pistols in NYC, a "brace of Horseman's pistols." He said he purchased them for several reasons: "They were cheap, for the purpose of affording me amusement by shoot

Image of 2015.02.0005 - Letter

2015.02.0005 - Letter

Letter from Mason Brown (New Haven, CT) who is in college at Yale University to Orlando Brown (Princeton, NJ) who is attending Princeton College. Mason discusses the holiday season and expresses his love for his brother. [Transcription] New Haven, Jan'y 2nd 1820 Dear Brother, Since we are through with our Christmas frolic, which lasted one week and were carried on with the greatest glee, I have taken up my pen to inform you of the continuance of my health, and to wish you a happy New Year. May its return always find you enjoying all the sweets which this life can bestow, and surrounded with friends who will participate in your pleasures. I received a letter from Mother 8 to 10

Image of 2015.02.0018 - Letter

2015.02.0018 - Letter

Letter from David Carlisle Humphreys (Frankfort, KY) to his Uncle John Brown about the apprehension of Randall Smith who murdered Preston Watts Brown (John's brother). [Transcription] Frankfort 14th Nov. 1826 Dear Uncle Your letter informing me of the apprehension of Smith I have just recd and am much pleased with the information. I have also recd a letter from W. Person in the same subject wishing some arrangement to be made to pay the men in Louisville which must be done. Mason and myself offered two hundred dollars in addition to the 200 subscribed by the citizens of Louisville. Fifty of which was paid to Parks & co to go after Smith, but from the way the advertisement r

Image of 2015.02.0026 - Letter

2015.02.0026 - Letter

Letter from John Brown (Frankfort, KY) to his brother, Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). John discusses his decision to send Orlando to Danville to be tutored by Kean O'Hara. He also discusses his brother Preston's plans and his numerous slaves. He discusses the crops, banks, and Transylvania University's new president, Holley. [Transcription] Frankfort 10th June 1818 Dear Brother I this morning by accident discovered your letter of the 1st June sticking up in Odens Tavern where it had been left for two or three days ago by some person whose name was unknown. Upon opening it I was greatly please to find that you had completed those necessary, the often perplexing arrangements, pre

Image of 2015.02.0031 - Letter

2015.02.0031 - Letter

Letter from Preston W. Brown (Versailles, KY) to Samuel Brown (New Haven, CT). Preston writes about traveling with brother John Brown and his daughter Heinretta's sickness. Preston, a doctor, tells Samuel, also a doctor, about area surgeons, McDowell and Dudley. Preston's views of McDowell and Dudley are not flattering. [Transcription] Dear Brother, I have resolved to set out for Madison next Monday perhaps in company with my brother John who came up yesterday to consult with me on this subject. I will go down to Frankfort tomorrow and proceed from thence by the way of Bardstown. Nothing will prevent J.B., going but Orlando's delay in setting off for Yale college, which will o

Image of 2015.02.0033 - Letter

2015.02.0033 - Letter

Letter from John Brown (Frankfort, KY) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA) that discusses Samuel's trip to Philadelphia, and Mason's studies at Yale. Brown had planned to go with Orlando to New Haven or Princeton, but his plans were disrupted by a visit from John Mitchell Mason, who was participating in an Ecclesiastical trial in Lexington. John Brown discusses the trial of Rankin. Rankin was charged by Mr. Bishop with perjury. John Mitchell Mason has convinced John to send Orlando to Princeton, where his own son Ebenezer also attends. Brown discusses James and Nancy Brown's trip to Europe, and his own desire to visit New Orleans and Mississippi. Brown discusses the corn and wheat crops i

Image of 2015.02.0036 - Letter

2015.02.0036 - Letter

Letter from John Brown (Frankfort, KY) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). John Brown discusses James Brown's arrival in New Orleans and the condition of James' plantation, and his election to the United States Senate. John discusses Orlando's and Mason's studies, and Orlando's dispute with his college roomate. Brown mentions the need for insurance for his home and recent fires in Frankfort. Brown discusses the debate in the State Legislature concerning the appointing of commissioners to help establish the line between Kentucky and Tennessee, and the surveying and selling of land in that area. Brown discusses navigation and dams on the Schuylkill River, and a similar issue on Elkhorn Cre

Image of 2015.02.0040 - Letter

2015.02.0040 - Letter

Letter from Mason Brown (New Haven, CT) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). Mason discusses travel plans for he and his brother Orlando and his joy to be in Orlando's company. He also discusses exams at Yale and Professor Silliman's Journal of which Samuel has wrote a notice to be included within. Mason also mentions that John Brown is selling land. [Transcription] New Haven, April 25th, 1819 Dear Uncle, I am favored with a few spare moments and have determined to employ them in writing you a few lines. Orlando arrived in this place several days ago, and will remain in Connecticut until our vacation commences (8 days) when I shall accompany him to New York and probably to Pri

Image of 2015.02.0042 - Letter

2015.02.0042 - Letter

Letter from Orlando Brown (Princeton, NJ) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). Orlando comments on Samuel's children: James' recovery from an illness and Susan's accomplishments. He also discusses life at Princeton; he comments on professors and students and his studies that have become more extensive. Orlando also discusses Preston Brown's career (he was a doctor) in Frankfort. [Transcription] Princeton, NJ., Feby 25th 1819 Dear Uncle I commence this letter with the expectation that in return for it you will give me a sound scolding for not answering your friendly notice of me in your last, but my reason for neglecting is such that you will readily accept and that is "want of

Image of 2015.02.0043 - Letter

2015.02.0043 - Letter

Letter from Orlando Brown (New York, NY) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). Orlando writes a humorous letter to his Uncle Sam in order to borrow money, so that he may return to college at Princeton after being on vacation. [Transcription] New York - May 13th. 1819 Dear Uncle Your letter inviting me to spend my vacation in Philadelphia, was received in New Haven and, owing to the disturbed faculties of a student during "holidays," I did not intend answering it until my return. But as necessity frequently sobers the most dissipated she has compelled me to collect my thoughts in the form of a petition & inform my uncle that I am in this wide city with a pocket drained of all that

Image of 2015.02.0054 - Letter

2015.02.0054 - Letter

Letter from Margaretta Brown (Frankfort, KY) to her son Orlando Brown (Princeton, NJ). Margaretta's letter to son Orlando describes a noteworthy event at Liberty Hall: breakfasting with U.S. President Monroe and War of 1812 heroes Andrew Jackson and Zachary Taylor. Her account of the visit overflows with pride and patriotism. Monroe was in Frankfort as part of his national tour around the country. Both Jackson and Taylor later became presidents. [Transcription] Frankfort Ky July 1 1819 My dear Orlando, Whenever I intend to write a letter, I generally exe-cute that intention immediately; for that "Thief of Time', Procrastination steals as many of our best thoughts, as he does

Image of 2016.02.0004 - Letter

2016.02.0004 - Letter

Letter from Orlando Brown (Princeton, NJ) to Samuel Brown (Philadelphia, PA). Orlando is attending Princeton and writes to his Uncle Sam telling him he needs less money than he thought. He also discusses seeing Nott, a Presbyterian minister, give a sermon, and how impressed he was with Nott. Orlando mentions that Nott has previously spoken about Alexander Hamilton. [Nott used Hamilton's death to draw attention to the evils of dueling]. Orlando also writes that Christopher Greenup is attending Princeton. [this was probably the son of Governor Greenup who died in 1818] [Transcription] Princeton, N.J., May 18th, 1819 Dear Uncle, Yours arrived this morning and I hasten to inform you t

Image of 2016.02.0006 - Letter

2016.02.0006 - Letter

Letter from Orlando Brown (Princeton, NJ) to Samuel Brown (Bordentown, NJ). Orlando discusses his financial situation, his upcoming commencement from Princeton, his brother Mason's plans, and Princeton's recent unjust dismissals of students. [Transcription] Sept. 19th 1819 Dear Uncle Yours of the 16th arrived this morning and as I now know where a letter will find you I have determined to answer this & the one received several days ago. In answer to your inquiry relative to the state of my purse I have the great pleasure to say that it does not contain a single cent and moreover that in the true spirit of banks, its paper is afloat without funds to redeem it-or in other words, I ha

Image of 2016.02.0054 - Letter

2016.02.0054 - Letter

Letter from John Brown (Frankfort, KY) to his sister-in-law, Elizabeth Watts Brown (Nashville, TN). Brown remarks upon Elizabeth's recent sickness and supposes it is due to the unseasonably warm and dry weather which is also affecting the corn and vegetable crops. Brown follows up on a business proposition offered by Samuel Worthington (in a previous letter) that would extend and modify their partnership contract. Brown also inquires about John Preston Watts Brown's success at college, and provides updates on family members. [Transcription] Frankfort 7th Sept. 1834 Dear Sister, The last intelligence recd from you was by Mr. Harvey on his return from Nashville, who informed that

Image of 2016.02.0029 - Letter

2016.02.0029 - Letter

Letter from John Brown (Frankfort, KY) to Samuel Brown (Lexington, KY) discussing matters relating to banking and the activities of the Legislature. Brown discusses debates over a property law, repealing the charters of independent banks, and funding of the university and medical school (Transylvania). He discusses the negotiating over the establishment of the boundary between Kentucky and Tennessee. Brown discusses James Percy Brown's resolution to control his temper, and Mason's return to Kentucky after college. [Transcription] Frankfort 26th January 1820 Dear Brother I return James Browns letter & thank you for the perusal of it, I have not lately received any direct intelligence

Image of 2016.02.0020 - Letter

2016.02.0020 - Letter

Letter from Margaretta Mason Brown (Columbia, PA) to Mary Watts Brown (Frankfort, KY). Margaretta discusses travel by steamboat and canal boat to visit relatives in the east. She discusses a ride on a gravitational cable railway while descending a mountain in PA, male and female fashions and a gift pocket made by Mary. She discusses future travel plans to New York and Baltimore after leaving Philadelphia. She discusses the acquaintances that she has visited while on her trip, Judith Ingersoll's childbirth and servants. Margaretta describes the church service, and distractions from city noises. [Transcription] Columbia, P. 20th May 1836 My dear Mary, I commence my letter in t

Image of 2016.02.0023 - Letter

2016.02.0023 - Letter

Letter from Margaretta Mason Brown (New York, NY) to Orlando Brown (Frankfort, KY). Margaretta, along with her husband John and slave Mary are visiting family in New York. Margaretta discusses purchasing items for Orlando's new home. She writes about purchasing a piano for Mary Watts (Orlando's wife) and going to a wallpaper factory. She also discusses furniture in general and describes a new and fashionable furniture style. She mentions John Goodman pianos (a piano maker in Frankfort) and the elegance of his designs. The style she remarks upon is Empire-style which Margaretta clearly dislikes. It can be inferred that she prefers Federal-style furniture. Margaretta also mentions Mary

Image of 2016.02.0024 - Letter

2016.02.0024 - Letter

Letter from Margaretta Mason Brown (Louisville, KY) to Orlando Brown (Tuscumbia, AL). Margaretta (and John) are assisting Elizabeth Watts Brown after the murder of her husband Preston Brown in Louisville. Mary Watts Brown, the daughter of Preston and Elizabeth, is also in Louisville, but still sick from a bout with bilious fever. Margaretta is eager to get back to Frankfort and she writes of her "black family suffering for clothing" in her absence. She writes about missing family and friends in Frankfort and Lexington and that since they have been gone for nearly eight weeks, they were not present for Betsy Humphreys' wedding [to Robert Todd]. The wedding occurred Nov. 1, 1826. [Tran