Samuel J. Brown Jr.; An Artist And Teacher October 26, 1994|by Jim Nicholson, Daily News Staff Writer
(Page 2 of 5)Dr. J. Clay Smith Jr., founder of the "Jurisart Movement," which attempts to explore the connectivity between the law and art, said that Brown created art works which "have exposed aspects of a lawless society, or a globe which would destroy itself by war rather than peaceful negotiations . . . Several of his canvasses are legal briefs calling for social and economic justice for Afro-Americans."
"He wanted to achieve and not only be a good artist but a good teacher, that was his thrust," said Samuel Brown, one of his sons, a musician who teaches at Lamberton High School and taught for many years at Olney High School.
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He said he retired early because the students "started not to behave and act like gentlemen and ladies," recalled his son.
But he continued painting and in retirement started doing more sculpture and jewelry-making. And he traveled a great deal. In 1986, the Brandywine Workshop and others joined to create a scholarship in his name for first-year students at the Philadelphia College of Art.
Jerald Brown, Brown's other son, said, "He was one who never let anything worry him. He would get concerned, but never worry . . . He was always concerned about my brother and I getting our education."
Jerald Brown, who is acting agricultural coordinator at Saul Agricultural High School in Roxborough, said he and his brother treated their father and mother to a 50th anniversary trip to Nassau, where they had honeymooned.
Brown married the former Miriam Ellison in 1938. Her father, the Rev. Dr. George F. Ellison, was pastor of Reeve Memorial Presbyterian Church for more than 50 years.
For much of his life, Brown always worked second and third jobs, such as sign painting, to support the family.
Born in Wilmington, N.C., Brown came to Philadelphia in 1917 and won his first art contest in the fourth grade. After graduating from South Philadelphia High School for Boys in 1926, he studied at the Pennsylvania Museum and the School of Industrial Art, now the Philadelphia College of Art.
He had his first one-man show in 1930 at the School of Industrial Art. He later received a master of arts equivalent degree from the University of Pennsylvania.