Colusa County











        In tracing the genealogy of the branch of the Brown family represented by this influential attorney of Colusa we find that he is descended from one John Brown, who immigrated from Ireland to New York prior to the war of the Revolution, removing to Virginia shortly after the close of that historic struggle. William, a son of this original immigrant, removed from Virginia to Kentucky in company with Daniel Boone, the Kentons, and other pioneer families of the Blue Grass state. Following the westward trend of emigration he settled in Missouri when that state was beyond the confines of civilization, being one of the very earliest settlers of Montgomery county. At the time of his death, which occurred in Dekalb county Mo., in 1865, he had reached the age of eighty-nine years. In religion he was of the Baptist faith. Among the twelve children born of his marriage to Miss Adams was William E., whose birth occurred in Montgomery county, Mo., in 1828, and who during early manhood cultivated land in Dekalb county, that state. In his life, no less than those of his ancestors, the pioneer instinct was early displayed. That “Westward the star of empire takes its way” he thoroughly believed, and, foreseeing to some extent the present dominance of the west, he resolved to seek a home beyond the shadow of the Rockies. Accompanied by his wife and child, in 1865 he crossed the plains with mule-teams, as a member of a large and well-armed expedition that safely made the dangerous trip through the midst of hostile Indians. For two years he remained at Corvallis, Ore., but in 1867 came to California and settled in the Antelope valley, about twenty-five miles west of Colusa. For many years he engaged in the stock business, making a specialty of sheep-raising, and he still continues agricultural pursuits, making his home on a farm owned by his son, Uriah Waverly. He was reared in the Baptist faith and has always adhered to the doctrines of that denomination. His wife, Martha J., was born in Kentucky and died in California in 1872; she was a daughter of Robert Bentley by his marriage to a Miss Burnett, and traced her ancestry to an old Virginia family. At an early day her father settled in Missouri, where he died in 1864,

         Of the children of William D. and Martha J. Brown the only one to attain mature years, Uriah Waverly Brown, was born near St. Joseph, Mo., November 24, 1860, and was five years of age when the family settled in Oregon. After coming to California he attended country schools and later, through his own efforts, paid his expenses through Pierce Christian College at College City, from which he was graduated in 1882 with the degrees of B. S. and B. L. During the ensuing three and one-half years he not only taught school but also studied law under the preceptorship of Richard Bayne. In 1887 he was admitted to the bar and has since attained rank among the successful attorneys of Colusa. As one of the attorneys for the defendant in the trail of W. N. Taylor for the murder of Dr. E. V. Gates he was instrumental in securing an acquittal. Besides his general practice, he acts as attorney for the Bank of Arbuckle, of which he is a stockholder; attorney for the Farmers & Merchants Bank of Colusa, of which he is a stockholder; and in legal matters in this vicinity represents the interest of the Sacramento Valley Land Company, in which he holds stock. Besides owning a number of grain farms he is interested with others in the Von Dorsten ranch of twenty-one hundred acres, which they subdivided, this being one of the pioneer efforts of subdivision of large ranches in the Sacramento valley. On the organization of the Cooks’ Spring Mineral Water Company in 1899 he was made its president and has since officiated in that capacity. Largely through his efforts the value of the water of this spring has become known in the west, and the company is now the largest shipper of natural mineral water on the Pacific coast. He is also one of the largest owners of the Colusa & Lake Railroad and one of its directors.

        The marriage of Mr. Brown united him with Miss Emma Lovelace, who was born in Missouri and accompanied her parents to California in 1868, settling in Colusa. Of their union four children were born, namely: Azile A., Harris Nesbit, Uriah Waverly, Jr., and Bentley Lovelace. The family are (sic) identified with the Colusa Christian Church, in which Mr. Brown holds office as president of the board of trustees. During the long period of his professional activity he has gained a high reputation for thorough knowledge of the law, yet he has not limited his energies to his practice. His interests are wide and varied, and his citizenship has proved of the greatest material advantage to Colusa, for he has fostered movement for its benefit and given his hearty support to public-spirited projects. He is a member of the Colusa Board of Trade, and has also given effective service to the city through his labors as a member of the board of library trustees. He was initiated into Odd Fellowship in the Colusa Lodge. Since the organization of the Odd Fellows’ Association, a corporation, he has acted as its president and in that capacity was instrumental in the building of the Odd Fellows block, the largest business structure in Colusa. His fraternal relations further include connection with Masonry. Made a Mason in Colusa Lodge, he was later raised to the chapter and commandery degrees in this city, and is also a member of Islam Temple, N. M. S., of San Francisco. While he is a believer in Democratic principles, no radical partisanship has ever marred the influence of his citizenship, but party matters have ever been secondary to the progress of his city and the development of its resources. It is to such men as he that a city owes its prestige and a commonwealth its standing in the galaxy of states.   




Transcribed By: Cecelia M. Setty.

­­­­Source: "History of the State of California and Biographical Record of the Sacramento Valley, Cal.," J. M. Guinn, Pages 310-313.  The Chapman Publishing Company, Chicago, 1906.

© 2017  Cecelia M. Setty.








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