Browns High School "Brownies"

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Browns High School Building
brownshs1.jpg
Browns, Illinois

Browns High School
brownshs2.jpg

The History of Browns High School
 
Browns (population 175) is located in southeastern Illinois about 40 miles east of Mt. Vernon.  This places Browns in the east-central area of Edwards County.  Browns sits on County Road 900 just south of Illnois Route 15.  According to Map Quest (www.mapquest.com) two railroad lines intersect in Browns.  The Southern Railroad runs east & west and the Illinois Central Gulf Railroad travels north & south through town. The Bonpas River flows to the east of town and another creek flows through the north side of town.

Browns was originally named Bonpas after the nearby previously named creek. The town name was changed to Frazier in the 1820s after Robert Frazier of Frazier's Prairie in the area. In 1892 the town name was officially changed to Browns in honor of John L. Brown, one of the owners of the land that Brown's was established upon. (Place Names of Illinois by Edward Callary).
 
The history of the school system are in need of more in depth research.  Some nice photos of Browns were found on the web site address www.infinityfarms.com , including the ones on this page.  It is believed that Browns was founded in the mid-1800s and began a school system shortly afterward. A high school was probably in place by the late 1800s.  We know that Browns High School served the community through the late 1940s.  It was then that Browns entered into a consolidation effort with schools including Albion, Bone Gap, and West Salem.  The effort resulted in the Edwards County School District being formed. The new District was in place prior to the start of the 1948 school year.

Browns High School Building 1931 Yearbook Photo
brownshsbuildingandgym1931yearbookdav.jpg
Note Gymnasium on Left - Provided by Mike Grace

 
We do not know if the school building on this page served the Edwards School District in any manner or was simply retired when the consolidation took place.  Please write to us if you have this information.
 
Browns High School Quick Facts
 
Year opened:                         late 1800s
Year closed:                          1948
Consolidated to:                     Edwards County School District (Albion)
Browns HS team nickname:    the "Brownies"
Team colors:                          Brown & White (?)
School Fight Song:                 unavailable
ATHLETICS
 
We do know that Borwns High School competed in basketball (www.ihsa.org).  It is probable that track and baseball were also on the sports menu.  We are searching for the team nickname, team colors, school fight song, and conference affiliation of Browns High School. Any informaton on Browns High School athletic program would be appreciated.
 
BOYS BASKETBALL
 
The Browns High School boys basketball team gave the home town folks one last "hurrah" prior to the school's closing.  IF our closing date is correct, Browns High School won the school's only District title in the school's final year of being open, 1947-48.  Great way to close out the sdchool's history, with one last measure of school pride!!  Unfortunately this is all we know. As you know, we are always searching for "the rest of the story" such as coaches names and team records of these and other great Browns High School teams. Several scores were located on a website titled "Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores."

Mike Grace states the Browns High School athletes competed in the Little Ten Conference in their area at least in the late 1920s and early 1930s. Mike's father, Duane Grace, played on the 1929-30 and 1930-31 teams that were coached by his brother, H.W. "Wally" Grace. Their brother Byron Grace joined them for the 1930-31 season!
 
1921-22                 Olney District Tournament        Coach's name & record needed.
                              1st Rd lost to Willow Hill 18-6
                              Olney beat Louisville in title game

1922-23 - 1928-29  Postseason scores, record, and coaches' names needed.

1929-30    15 - 16  Postseason scores needed             Coach H.W. "Wally" Grace
 
1930-31    24 - 7    Little Ten Conf.. Champs              Coach H.W. "Wally" Grace
                               Postseason scores needed
                               24 wins were most in school history at that time.

Browns High School Basketball Team 1930-31
brownshsbball193031teamdav.jpg
Provided by Mike Grace

Regarding the photo above, the three Grace brothers pictured are found as explained by Mike Grace, son of Duane Grace:

"Duane is at the far left, Wallace is in the middle (suit) and Byron is second from left in the second row."


1931-32  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.

1932-33                 Lawrenceville District Tournament  Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd lost to Bridgeport 46-17
                              Lawrenceville beat Flat Rock in title game

 
1933-34                 Bridgeport District Tournament        Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd lost to St. Francisville 39-27
                              Bridgeport beat Lawrenceville in title game
  
1934-35                 Lawrenceville District Tournament   Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd lost to Lancaster 25-17
                              Mt. Carmel beat Flat Rock in title game
  
1935-36                 Bellmont District Tournament           Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd lost to Burnt Prairie 31-23
                              Bone Gap beat Norris City in title game
  
1936-37  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
1937-38  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
1938-39  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
1939-40  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
    
1940-41                 Bellmont District Tournament           Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd Beat Keensburg 41-15
                              Semi-final lost to Bone Gap 40-20
                              Bone Gap lost to Bellmont in title game
 
1941-42  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
 
1942-43                 Bellmont District Runner-Up          Coach's name & record needed
                              Title Game lost to Bone Gap 39-30
 
1943-44  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
 
1944-45                 Bellmont District Tournament           Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd Beat Parkersburg 49-33
                              Semi-final lost to St. Francisville 57-21
                              St. Francisville beat Allendale in title game
 
1945-46                 Bone Gap District Tournament          Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd Beat Parkersburg 67-31
                              Semi-final lost to St. Francisville 40-30
                              Allendale beat St. Francisville in title game

1946-47                 St. Francisville District Tournament   Coach's name & record needed
                              1st Rd Beat Keensburg 55-22
                              Semi-final lost to St. Francisville 34-30
                              Allendale beat St. Francisville in title game

1947-48                 Allendale District Champions          Coach's name & record needed
                              Early Rd Scores Needed
                              Title Game Beat St. Francisville 52-40
                              Carmi Regional Tournament
                              1st Rd lost to Graysville 41-39
                              **Graysville lost to Carmi in Semi-final
                              Carmi beat Mt. Carmel in title game

**Final game for the Browns High School "Brownies." The school closed in the summer of 1948.

BOYS BASEBALL

The following information was [provided by Mike Grace regarding the Browns High School baseball program.

1930-31     6 - 0    Little Ten Conference Champions     Coach H.W. "Wally" Grace

Browns HS Baseball Team 1930-31
brownshs193031baseballteamconfchampsdav.jpg
Little Ten Conf. Champs - Submitted by Mike Grace

Regarding the photo above, the three Grace brothers pictured are found as explained by Mike Grace, son of Duane Grace:

"Byron and Duane are the first two on the left and Wallace is at far right in second row."

ACTIVITIES

Browns High School offered a very well-rounded education. The school started a Lierary Club and Girls Athletic Association club in 1928. 

Browns HS Hawthorne Literary Club 1929
brownshshawthornelieteraryclub1929dav.jpg
Provided by Mike Grace

Browns HS First GAA Club 1929
brownshsgaa1929dav.jpg
Provided by Mike Grace

Browns HS Literary and GAA Article 1929 Yearbook
brownsgaaliteraryclubbegins1929dav.jpg
Provided by Mike Grace

MEMORIES

**From Mike Grace:

"My dad, Duane Grace, played both basketball and baseball at Browns High School in the 1929-1930 school year and the 1930-1931 school year. They played in the Little Ten Conference and both sports were coached by dad’s brother, H. W. “Wally” Grace. Their basketball record in 29-30 was 15 and 16.

Their basketball record in 30-31 was 24 and 7.  According to the yearbook, that was the most wins by a team in school history.  Also that year dad and Uncle Wallace were joined on the teams by another brother, Byron Grace. The baseball team that year was 6 and 0 and conference champions."

Need More Information
 
If you have any more information you can provide regarding Browns High School please submit a Guest Commentary Form or a School Submission Form.  We like to share photos of the great teams and coaches if possible.  You can also e-mail us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net or write us at:
 
Illinois HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago, Il.     60631

Browns HS GAA 1931
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Submitted by Mike Grace

Browns HS Freshmen Class 1931
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Submitted by Mike Grace