Randolph  County,  Indiana

James  Browne


            As a painter and decorator James M. Browne, of Winchester, stands in the front rank in Randolph and adjoining counties. This position was not attained by him without persistent and long continued effort. Of course he had natural ability in that line but everyone knows that no matter how much Mother Nature may help us we must apply ourselves diligently if we would meet with more than mediocre success in any line of human endeavor, This was clearly understood by Mr. Browne at the outset, consequently he left no stone unturned whereby he might ascend the ladder to the coveted goal.
            Mr. Browne was born in Ridgeville, Randolph county, October 23, 1868. He is a son of George W. and Sarah (Sims) Browne. The father was born in this county also, being a representative of one of our well-known old families; but the mother's birth occurred in Parkersburg, West Virginia. George W. Browne grew to manhood in his native community and was educated in the common schools of his day, and when a young man he learned the carpenter's trade which he made his principal life work, becoming quite a skilled workman. He was active in Republican politics and at one time was trustee of White River township. He was a soldier in the Civil war, a member of Company H, One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, serving gallantly for three years, part of the time with Sherman and took part in the sanguinary Atlanta campaign. He was never wounded or taken prisoner. His death occurred on June 6, 1906, his wife having preceded him to the grave on March 20, 1875. Mr. Browne was a member of the Nelson Trusler Post, Grand Army of the Republic. He belonged to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, filling all the chairs in the local lodge, was also a member of the Encampment. He was a member of the Christian church. Soon after the birth of our subject, the elder Browne moved to Winchester with his family where he worked at his trade.
            James M. Browne was reared in Winchester and was educated in the local schools. When a young man he learned the paintersí and decoratorsí trade and has followed this to the present time, having become widely known throughout this section of the state for his skill, conscientious and high-grade work and his promptness in turning out jobs, consequently his services have long been in great demand. Since 1893 he has been a contract painter and decorator. He maintains a well and carefully stocked store carrying all kinds of paints, oils, wall paper of all grades, glass and decorative goods, also has a picture department and picture framing. His store is regarded by all of his many customers as one of the finest and best appointed stores of its kind in this part of the state, in fact, it would do credit to cities much larger than Winchester. He has built up a large and ever growing trade through his foresight, industry, honesty, and courteous dealings with his fellow men.
            Mr. Browne was for four years a member of the city council, a member at-large since 1909. Politically he is a Republican and has always remained faithful to its precepts, and is always active in local public affairs, having done much to encourage the general upbuilding of his town and county. He is a man whose counsel in public matters is always regarded as valuable and reliable. He belongs to the Business Men's Association. Fraternally he is a member of the Masonic Order, the Knights of Pythias, and the Modern Woodmen, also Camp of the Old Forty-four Sons of Veterans.
            Mr. Browne was married August 12, 1892 to Dollie Cranor, a daughter of Joseph C. and Mary (Hunt) Cranor. The father is deceased, but the mother is living at Richmond, Indiana. To our subject and wife five children have been born, namely: Mary, born November 2, 1893; Doris, born July 20, 1895; Reva, born August 3,1896; Joe Donald, born June 1, 1898; and Juanita, born February 14, 1904. They are all at home.
            Mr. Browne and family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he has been a member of the official board since 1907, and is financial secretary of the board. His place of business is at 111 West Franklin street.
Past and Present of Randolph County, Indiana, 1914.
Contributed by Gina Richardson

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