My Contribution: I served in the brigade defending Harrisburg from Confederate forces in the invasion of 1863. I actively contrib- uted to Capital Presbyterian Church as a charter member. I contrib- uted to the political well-being of Harrisburg as the associate editor and publisher of Our National Progress, as a constitutional conven- tion representative, and as a common council member. I was very active in attending the Black conventions of my day along with Rev. Charles Carter and O.L.C. Hughes.
My Legacy: I was a fixture of Harrisburg’s political, activist, and church circles, producing a newspaper with William Howard Day, investing in the future of Capital Presbyterian Church, and running a successful barber shop.
About Me: “The late Cassius Brown was a model of good citizenship. He lived with the honor and regard of his fellows and died loved and respected by all who knew him, a shining example for others.” — Harrisburg Telegraph, August 8, 1921.
Full Name: Cassius M. Brown, Sr.
Birth Date: September 17, 1844
Death Date: August 6, 1921
Place of Birth: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Race: Black (1880 and 1900 Federal Censuses), “Mulatto” (1850, 1870, and 1910 Federal Censuses), White (superimposed over the faded, original markings for “Mulatto” in the 1920 Federal Census).
Places of Residence:
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: 516 Walnut Street (1876-1878), 644 Walnut Street (1880-1883), 642 Walnut Street (1884-1886), 414 Walnut Street (Rented 1887-1902), and 267 Briggs Street (Owned, 1904-1921).
Connection to the Old Eighth Ward: Connection to the Old Eighth Ward: Resident; leader of organizations
Family Members: : Father: Thomas Brown. Mother: Wilhemina Brown. Wife (m. 1865-1921): Amanda Cornelia Grey Brown. Children: Singleton Brown, Howard D. Brown, Richard S. Brown, Charles Sumner Brown, Cornelia Brown Jenkins, Ida Brown Colley, and Cassius M. Brown, Jr
Education: Attended school; trained in the barber trade in Lewistown, Pennsylvania
Occupations: : Barber (1861-1891). Publisher and Associate Editor of Our National Progress. Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms at the constitutional convention of Pennsylvania (1872-1874). Member of the common council of Harrisburg (1890-1894)
Church Membership: Capital Presbyterian Church: charter member, Sunday School assistant superintendent, superintendent, ruling elder, clerk of the session, and commissioner to Carlisle general assembly
Activism: Harrisburg Fifteenth Amendment Celebration Committee; Harrisburg Republican Party; Pennsylvania Equal Rights League; Charles Sumner Death Meeting Leader; Grand United Order of Odd Fellows; and Negro National Convention
Connections: William Howard Day, Ida Brown Colley, George H. Imes, Charles J. Carter, John Q. Adams, William R. Dorsey, John W. Simpson, John Gaitor, William Burris, O.L.C. Hughes.