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History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/John L. Brown

JOHN L. BROWN was born in Essex County, New Jersey, October 31, 1838. He first came to Iowa in 1856 but returned to Indiana where his father had located and attended and taught school. When the Civil War began, he enlisted in Company A, Seventeenth Indiana Volunteers, and at the Battle of Resaca received a gunshot wound which caused the amputation of his arm. Upon the close of the war he attended a Methodist Academy at Danville, and in 1870 moved to Chariton in Lucas County, Iowa, which became his permanent home. He has held many offices in the county, serving seven years as auditor, and resigning to become Auditor of State in 1883. He inaugurated many reforms in the insurance department which arrayed against him powerful corporations which sought to have him impeached for official misconduct. After a lengthy trial he was acquitted of all serious charges and a subsequent General Assembly reimbursed him for expenses incurred in the trial. The reforms which he accomplished placed the insurance companies of the State on a sound basis requiring them to make good impaired capital. Upon the retirement of Mr. Brown from official life he returned to Chariton and purchased the Herald, of which he became the editor and publisher.