biographies & photos...

Biographies and Photos of Carroll County Ancestor


John Jackson Brown of Carroll County, MS

From my book:“Brown & Sullivan Footprints Across America”
Written by: Norman Brown

I always thought my Browns' had been in Mississippi long before the civil war but after years of research I discovered that my Great Grandfather, John Jackson Brown settled in Carroll Co., MS in the 1880';s and was actually born in Dale county, Alabama.

The ironic part of the story is the fact that I was born only a few miles from where he was born. But first, I should cover the family tree somewhat as follows:

John Brown was born before 1774 in Duplin County, NC and married Lidea. They had a son named John J. Brown b. 1795 in NC who married Elizabeth Day, b. 1812 in SC. They appear in 1840 & 1850 Census in Barbour Co., Al, & 1860 in Dale Co.

Their oldest son was Jesse D. Brown & he married Leah A.? Jesse was born about 1840 in Barbour County, AL. Their oldest son was John Jackson, b. 1858. Jesse joined the CSA and was killed at Chickamauga, TN in 1863. (for battle details refer to my book)

Jesse';s wife remarried John Jacobs and he was a cruel man; especially toward the children. John J. was probably about 14 or 15 when he got into an argument with Jacobs. He had been abused enough so he struck Jacobs on the head with a club, knocking him unconscious.

John thought he had killed him so he grabbed a horse (Stolen?) and fled to Texas. Later on, when telling this story to a grandson he was asked“why did you go to Texas?” He replied“That';s what you did back then when you got into trouble; you went to Texas”.

It is unknown exactly where he went in Texas but I believe he was not far from the railroad lines. He told his family that he“made a crop” but I doubt this. It is likely he worked as a farm laborer or worked on cattle drives. Whatever the case; he returned by train to Little Rock, Arkansas. It was there that two thugs mugged him and took all of his money. The police department took up a collection for him so he would have enough money to return home to Alabama.

He did return as reported based upon the 1880 census of Barbour County, Alabama. It was here that John J. appears at age 22 and married to Susannah Brown. I know her maiden name was Brown as her brother James F. was in the household. They had a daughter born in 1883 named Georgia. Susannah probably died during childbirth or results thereof. Being alone John could not care for his infant daughter so he left Georgia with his brother William Andrew in Dale (later Geneva) County, Alabama and went to Texas the second time.

I am not sure how long he was in Texas but he probably went there about 1884 or 1885. I believe he stayed in Texas for about two years and decided to return to Alabama. He made it as far as Carroll County, Mississippi.

When he arrived he was broke, tired, and hungry. He spent his first night in Carroll County sleeping in a cornfield. The next day he started looking for a job and was hired by a local resident; William H. Carithers. Mr. Carithers operated a sawmill in the local area.

William Carithers married Clementine Carroll; daughter of Phillip Carroll and Pricilla Slaughter of Winona. Clementine was one half Cherokee or Choctaw Indian. They had a daughter; Rose Ann; nickname“Roxie”. John married Roxie at Duck Hill, MS, May 27, 1889. I consider it an odd occurrence that my wedding date was also on May 27.

John never told his family that he had been married before or that he had a daughter by that first wife. It was learned by the author when checking the census of 1900 where Georgia was found in the household of his brother William. Georgia was listed as a“niece”. Relatives remember her visiting her father so it is possible that some family members knew about her. In William';s household she was addressed as“Aunt Georgia” and that side of the family was not aware of her linage.

John and Roxie remained in Carroll County where they owned and operated a farm north of Carrollton and her parents lived nearby. They had a large family and the oldest child was Andrew Jackson Brown, my Grandfather. He moved to Alabama and married my grandmother Ethel Sullivan. Andrew died of Typhoid fever when he was in his 20';s in Dothan, AL; leaving a wife and 4 children. This created a void for me as little family history was passed down.

John J. Brown prospered as a farmer in Carroll County and he purchased a Maxwell Automobile in 1915; one of the first automobiles in the County. His purpose was to use the car to visit his brother William Andrew in Geneva County, Alabama. His son Jasper learned to drive the car and took John J. on the visit to Alabama in 1915. Jasper reported that it took a couple of weeks or more to reach their destination and about the same amount of time to return to Carrollton.

I never had the opportunity to meet John & Roxie as they died when I was young. It was 1977 when I visited their son Jasper Brown at the farm in Carroll County. This visit gave birth to my genealogy research. My interest was sparked after viewing the Brown family bible and seeing a photo hanging on the wall of my Great-Great Grandfather Jesse D. Brown in his Confederate uniform. Fortunately, I copied all the names and dates from the bible. No one claims possession of that bible today but I did obtain the photo. There was another photo of William H. Carithers in his uniform also but that photo can no longer be located.

John J. Brown died May 10, 1948 and Roxie died May 15, 1954. Both are buried in the North Carrolton cemetery. Two of their children and Roxie';s parents are buried at“Hickory Grove” cemetery; north of Carrollton.

Author';s note: The final chapter on John Jackson Brown came to a close in November, 2004 with the receipt of a photograph of John and Roxie. For anyone interested in the book on this line please send an email to the author at and we will place you on the wait list. We anticipate publication by early 2005.

Carroll County


I am John Hansen, volunteer County Coordinator for Carroll County, Mississippi.  I have family lines from here and hence my interest in establishing as much information as possible on early Carroll County History.

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The Carroll County, Mississippi Genealogical and Historical Web Site was brought online in 1998, and is sponsored by the MSGenWeb Project, a part of the  USGenWeb Project.

This website has been developed to provide research and family history resources for Carroll County, Mississippi ancestry.

New resources are added as made available, so check back often for new content.





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