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Sterling N. Brown (Sterling Nelson), 1858-1929
My Own Life Story
Washington, D.C.: Hamilton Printing, 1924.


Sterling N. Brown was born in 1858 in Roane County, Tennessee and spent only a few years of his life in slavery. As a young boy, he was forced to leave school in order to support his family by working in a brickyard. Nevertheless, he went to college, graduating from Fisk University in 1875 and Oberlin College in 1888. While pursuing his education, he became increasingly involved in religious leadership. He held extra classes before and after school for students, their parents, and others, while he was teaching. He also spoke at many Christian meetings and events. Brown's narrative, My Own Life Story (1924), opens with letters from his associates praising the author and his autobiography. The narrative primarily concerns Brown's professional career in Washington, D.C., where he taught in the School of Religion at Howard University, worked with churches in the area, and provided a basic education to other Blacks. He and his wife had six children.

Monique Prince

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