Guide to the Allan Danvers Brown Papers, 1860-1904
Norwich University Archives
158 Harmon Drive
Northfield, VT 05663
Phone: (802) 485-2947
Fax: (802) 485-2173
Brown, Allan Danvers, 1843-1904
Allan Danvers Brown Papers
2 Boxes (1.25 linear feet)
About the Collection
The collection contains biographical information about Allan D. Brown, president of Norwich University, 1896-1904, including correspondence from William Arba Ellis as he prepared his published history of Norwich University. There is information on both the inauguration and death of Allan Brown, along with selected acts of the Vermont legislature that pertain to Norwich, 1898 and 1900. A letterpress book, 1898-1900, documents a portion of Brown’s presidency. The collection also includes transcriptions of correspondence with his wife, 1863-1876. At the urging of his family, Brown began to transcribe these excerpts in 1871. The collection also includes a scrapbook containing Brown’s Naval papers, orders, commissions and correspondence from 1860-1891. These papers document Brown’s Naval service from the Civil war until his retirement in 1891. See the content listing for additional information.
The transcribed excerpts begin in June 1863, shortly before he married Gertrude on 29 December 1863. In an opening statement addressed to his children, Brown mentions the circumstances of his marriage and his entrance into active service. Other episodes of interest from these excerpts include Brown’s visit to the Court of King Mongkut (Rama IV of Siam) just months before the King’s death in October 1868, and letters written by Brown from Pensacola Barracks in Panama City, Panama, while serving aboard the U.S.S. Pensacola during the autumn of 1873. The then 30-year-old naval officer suddenly found himself ashore in charge of a detachment of troops charged with keeping a watchful eye on American property (the Pacific Mail Steamship Company and the Panama Railroad Company), which had been fired upon. The collection includes a complete copy of correspondence between the commanding officer of the U.S. Naval Detachment and the authorities of the ships in Panama Bay. About Allan Danvers Brown
Allan D. Brown was born in Batavia, NY. Educated at a military institution in Hamden, CT, he entered the U.S. Naval Academy in 1860 and graduated in 1863. His first assignment was as Ensign aboard the U.S.S. Iroquois during the Civil War. He was promoted to Commander in 1880. Brown served with the Navy until his retirement in 1891. Following his retirement, he served as deacon and priest of the Episcopal Church in Vermont. Brown was elected to the presidency of NU in 1896 and served until 1904. He married first Gertrude Tyler (d.1877) in 1863 and the couple had two daughters. Brown later married Adeline Shannon in 1880 and the couple had one son, William Pierce Brown, Norwich class of 1907. Additional information about Brown’s life and career can be found in the family history, The Tyler-Browns of Brattleboro by Dorothy Sutherland Melville. Dorothy Melville was Brown’s granddaughter and also transcribed and annotated some of the letters between Brown and his first wife, Gertrude, which can be found in the collection. Allan D. Brown died on 3 April 1904 in Waynesville, NC.
The following subjects are represented in this collection. If you are researching these topics, try using these search terms in the library catalog:
Brown, Allan Danvers, 1843-1904
United States. — Navy — History — 19th century.
Mongkut, — King of Siam, — 1804-1868.
United States — History — Civil War, 1861-1865 — Naval operations.
Thailand — Social life and customs.
Panama (Panama) — History.
The collection is open.
Many items in the University Archives are one-of-a-kind resources that are not likely to be available anywhere but here. For this reason, forming citations for archival sources is a little different than for books and periodicals. If you need to cite anything from this collection, follow the format below: Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Allan Danvers Brown Papers, Box and/or Folder and/or Item Identification; Norwich University Archives, Kreitzberg Library, Northfield, VT. Here’s an example from the collection:
Letter to William Arba Ellis from Helen Tyler Brown, 27 February 1911. Biographical and Ellis Correspondence file, Allan Danvers Brown Papers, Norwich University Archives, Kreitzberg Library, Northfield, VT.
Extent: 2 Boxes (1.25 linear feet) Collection Location: Archives 501 Language(s) of Material: English Repository: Norwich University Archives, Kreitzberg Library, 158 Harmon Dr., Northfield, VT 05663 USA, Phone: 802.485.2947, Fax: 802.485.2173, email@example.com
The family history, The Tyler-Browns of Brattleboro by Dorothy Sutherland Melville (New York: Exposition Press, 1973), is available in Special Collections at 929.20973 B877t.
Acts of the Vermont legislature regarding Norwich University, 1898 and 1900
Biographical information from William Arba Ellis’s correspondence
Correspondence with Brown family and researchers, 1979-1986
Death of Allan Danvers Brown, 1904
Inauguration of Allan Danvers Brown, 8 December 1896
Letterpress book, September 1898 to April 1900, along with a letter from George Dewey in the Philippines to Brown, 3 October 1898 (1 Volume)
Transcriptions of letters to Gertrude Brown, 1861-1876, transcriptions begun by Allan D. Brown in 1871 (1 Volume); includes both Brown’s manuscript transcriptions and selected typed transcriptions by Dorothy S. Melville, 1868 and 1873
Scrapbook of naval orders, 1860-1891 (1 Volume)
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.