Clarence J. Brown

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Clarence J. Brown
Clarence J. Brown as Lieutenant Governor of Ohio.png
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Ohio's 7th district
In office
January 3, 1939 – August 23, 1965
Preceded by Arthur W. Aleshire
Succeeded by Clarence J. "Bud" Brown Jr.
36th Lieutenant Governor of Ohio
In office
January 13, 1919 – January 8, 1923
Governor James M. Cox
Harry L. Davis
Preceded by Earl D. Bloom
Succeeded by Earl D. Bloom
36th Ohio Secretary of State
In office
January 10, 1927 – January 9, 1933
Preceded by Thad H. Brown
Succeeded by George S. Myers
Personal details
Born (1893-07-14)July 14, 1893
Blanchester, Ohio
Died August 23, 1965(1965-08-23) (aged 72)
Bethesda, Maryland
Resting place I.O.O.F. Cemetery, Blanchester, Ohio
Political party Republican Party
Spouse(s) Ethel McKinney
Children at least three
Alma mater Washington and Lee University School of Law

Clarence J. Brown, Sr. (July 14, 1893 - August 23, 1965) was an American newspaper publisher and politician; he represented Ohio as a Republican in the United States House of Representatives from 1939 to his death in 1965. Long representing conservative views, near the end of his life, he helped gain passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which provided enforcement of the right to vote for all citizens.

As president of Brown Publishing Company from 1920, he created a huge media company that lasted for 90 years. In 1918, at age 25, Brown was elected as the 36th Lieutenant Governor of Ohio, the youngest man to gain that post.

Life and career[edit]

Brown was born in Blanchester, Clinton County, Ohio[1] or West Union, Clermont County, Ohio,[2] the son of Owen and Ellen Barerre (McCoppin) Brown. His middle name is "J" and does not stand for anything. He attended the Blanchester public schools, and then attended law school at Washington and Lee University, in Lexington, Virginia, from 1913 to 1915.

On his twenty-first birthday, Brown married Ethel McKinney. He worked as state statistician in 1915 and 1916 in the Ohio Secretary of State's office.

Brown began newspaper work in Blanchester in 1917, where he published several country newspapers. He became president of the Brown Publishing Company in Blanchester, and also owned and operated several large farms. He directed Brown Publishing for the rest of his life.

Political career[edit]

In 1918, at age 25, Brown was elected as the 36th Lieutenant Governor of Ohio, serving from 1919 to 1923; he was the youngest man ever to hold the office. In 1926, he was elected Ohio Secretary of State and served from 1927 to 1933.

Brown twice ran for governor of Ohio: in 1932, he lost the primary; in 1934, he won the Republican nomination but lost the general election. Brown was a delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1936, 1940, 1944 and 1948, and a member of the Republican National Committee beginning in 1944.

Brown was elected in 1938 as a Republican to the Seventy-sixth and to the thirteen succeeding Congresses, serving from January 3, 1939 until his death in 1965. While in Congress, he was chairman of the Select Committee on Newsprint in the Eightieth Congress; he was very close to Speaker Sam Rayburn of Texas.

In the 1930s, Brown was a staunch isolationist and opposed President Franklin D. Roosevelt's policies. When Harry S. Truman became president, Brown opposed his Fair Deal. Brown co-sponsored legislation to create the Hoover Commission to study the Federal government and served on the commission, formally the Commission on the Organization of the Executive Branch of Government.

By the 1950s, Brown was the ranking minority member of the important Rules Committee in Congress. In the 1960s, he worked with its chairman, Democrat Howard W. Smith of Virginia to block liberal legislation sought by presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson, including enforcement of constitutional civil rights of African Americans. (Smith was a senior member of the Southern Block, established by white Democrats at the turn of the 20th century when former Confederate states disfranchised blacks.) But, near the end of his life, Brown broke with the ardent segregationist Smith. He checked out of the hospital to help shepherd the Voting Rights Act of 1965 through Smith's Rules Committee, and contributed to the achievements of the civil rights movement.

Brown died at Bethesda Naval Hospital, Bethesda, Maryland on August 23, 1965. He was buried in the I.O.O.F. Cemetery, Blanchester, Ohio.

Brown was a member of the Masons, K. of P., I.O.O.F., Moose, and M.W.A.[3]

His son Clarence J. "Bud" Brown Jr. won the special election in 1965 to fill his father's seat in Congress. His grandson is Clancy Brown, an actor. He is no relation to the film director of the same name.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Bioguide
  2. ^ ANB
  3. ^ Halley, W E; Maynard, John P. (1920). Manual of Legislative Practice in the General Assembly 1919-1920. Columbus: State Bindery. p. 38. 

External links[edit]