Yes, I know about the county proximities. We think Alexander A. Brown, his father, left Northport about the time John A. was born in 1852. He went to either Choctaw Co or back to Macon Co. where they came from. Evidently the father was a teacher while in Northport.
There are living Browns today in Mobile from John A.'s brother, Rev. Alexander Bascom Brown's line. (Methodist)
No clue why John A. ended up there or the Willingham connection.
This is even wilder, I had a boyfriend at the U of Al in Tusc whose gm was a Berry, from Berry Al!