Edith M. Brown
Edith was the only child of Charles C. Brown
jr (1852-1932 and Minnie Doan Brown (1855-1923).
Charles had come to Wisconsin with his parents
as a small boy when Kenosha was named Southport. The family
soon settled in Milwaukee but
Charles returned to Kenosha as a young man in 1868
and went into the mercantile business. One of
his partners was Seth Doan. In 1877 Charles
married Seth's daughter, Minnie
Doan, in the first marriage ceremony performed at
Kenosha's new Episcopal church. In 1890 he
went to work at Kenosha's oldest bank, the First
National on 6th Ave.
In the years after the fire
Three years after the fire, in 1906, Edith
Brown married Walter
J. Cavanaugh (1879-1919), son of a prominent Kenosha
attorney and a former University of Chicago football
celebrity. After his early death in an auto
accident she lived with her parents and after the
death of her mother, with her aged father.
By 1909 Charles C. Brown had
risen to become president of the First
National Bank. He went on to also head the
Northwestern Loan & Trust Co. and the Brown National
Bank. Charles was active in his community,
helping to establish a hospital and a library.
It was a legacy his daughter would emulate.
"Mother of Pottawatomie
Edith Brown Cavenaugh
committed herself to the Girl Scout program in
Kenosha after her husband's death. Over a period of thirty years
she served in
various local and national offices of the
organization. In May, 1929
she was the girl scout commissioner who took receipt
gift of 80 acres of land and a cash donation with
which to start a girl scout camp on Lake Pleasant
north of Elkhorn, Wisconsin, today's
Pottawatomie Hills. The donation came from
Jessie Halleck Nash, wife of
Charles W. Nash, president of Nash
Motors, best known for the
Rambler. (The 4th largest U.S. auto
manufacturer in 1929, Nash had been founded in
Kenosha.) Edith's involvement in the project earned
her the nickname, "Mother of Pottawatomie Hills."
Sadly, Edith died
after a lengthy illness, never remarrying or having
children. I suspect that she was not alone,
addition to Girl Scouts she was involved in the
St. Matthew's church woman's auxiliary.
Frank was secretary
Bain Wagon Company in Kenosha. He was the son
of Martin Slosson (1803-1888) and Sabra Avery
Slosson (1802-1894). He had lost his wife, Elizabeth
Lyman (1856-1891) in 1891. Nothing was reported to
suggest whether Edith Brown and Frank's relationship was
romantic. If it was, he had a daughter the same age as Edith so
tongues may have been wagging in Kenosha, then a
community of just over 10,000 where such goings on
would have been noted. I came across the snippet
below at the bottom of a
newspaper page. Note that Frank's daughter's name was
Agnes Narramore Slosson, not Edith. Given that
the Frank Slosson of billiards fame was actually
named George Franklin Slosson and was still alive in
1916, whereas the Frank Slosson of Kenosha, who
survived the Iroquois Theater fire, died in 1911,
the entire snippet might have been based on
supposition. Still, it is curious that the
woman named in the hotel registry as the daughter of
Frank of Kenosha, was an Edith instead of an Agnes.
According to a passport
application Frank Slosson was 5' 6" with a dark complexion,
medium build, gray eyes, a long nose and a mustache.
As a young man he had graduated from Lenox Academy
in Lenox, Massachusetts then became a telegrapher.
When the Civil War started he enlisted at age
sixteen in Co. B in
the 49th Massachusetts infantry. He was
detached from the company and became part of the
telegraph corps under General
Thomas Thompson Eckert. Slosson
moved to Wisconsin in 1870.
In the years after the fire
Frank Slosson went to Tokyo
in April, 1910 for a six month stay. Back in
the states in February, 1911 he died of complications
following surgery for a perforated stomach.
His brother, Judge Russell Slosson in Kenosha,
followed four months later. Frank's daughter
Agnes inherited $100,000 worth of stock in
Bain Wagon Company. In accompanying stories it
was reported he had been a general manager at
Chicago-Kenosha Hosiery. He was replaced by
Henry S. Cooper of the Cooper Underwear company in
Kenosha – the same company that lost two at the