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Aaron Venable[1] Brown (August 15, 1795 – March 8, 1859) was an American politician. He served as Governor of Tennessee
Governor of Tennessee
from 1845 to 1847, and as United States Postmaster General
United States Postmaster General
from 1857 until his death in 1859. He also served three terms in the United States House of Representatives, from 1839 to 1845. During the Mexican-American War, Brown's statewide call for 2,800 volunteers was answered by over 30,000, helping solidify the state's reputation as the "Volunteer State."[2][3]

Contents

1 Early life 2 Career 3 Family 4 References 5 External links

Early life[edit] Brown was born in Brunswick County, Virginia, one of eleven children of Aaron and Elizabeth Melton Brown.[2] His father was a Methodist minister.[4] Brown attended Westrayville Academy in Nash County, North Carolina, and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1814, where he was valedictorian of his class.[2] He studied law with Judge James Trimble in Nashville, Tennessee,[4] and was admitted to the bar in 1817. In 1818, he moved to Giles County, Tennessee, and became the law partner of future president James K. Polk.[2] Career[edit] Brown was a member of the Tennessee
Tennessee
Senate from 1821 to 1825 and from 1827 to 1829. He also served two terms in the Tennessee
Tennessee
House of Representatives, from 1831 to 1835.[2] In 1839, he defeated incumbent Ebenezer J. Shields for the 10th District congressional seat, and won reelection to this seat in 1841.[5] In 1843, he was redistricted to the 6th District, which he represented in Congress for a single term.[4] As a congressman, he lobbied for the annexation of Texas
Texas
in 1843.[4] After his third term in Congress, Brown initially planned to retire and focus on his business affairs, but he accepted the Democratic nomination for governor in 1845. The incumbent, James C. Jones, a popular Whig, was not seeking reelection, and the Whigs instead nominated Senator Ephraim H. Foster. In the general election, Brown lost East Tennessee
Tennessee
and West Tennessee, but won enough votes in populous Middle Tennessee
Tennessee
to carry the election by 1,400 votes out of 115,000 cast.[4]

Portrait of Brown by Washington B. Cooper

When the Mexican-American War
Mexican-American War
began, largely through the actions of his friend and former law partner, Polk, who was now president, Brown issued a call for 2,800 volunteer soldiers for the war effort. Over 30,000 answered the call, solidifying the state's reputation as the "Volunteer State," a reputation that had been gained when Tennesseans answered a similar call during the War of 1812.[2][6] While initially popular, support for the war gradually declined, and Brown was defeated in his reelection bid by Neill S. Brown
Neill S. Brown
(no relation) in 1847.[4] In 1850, Brown was a delegate to the Nashville Convention, which was a gathering of delegates from slave-holding states to consider a course of action should the federal government attempt to ban slavery. Brown and his brother-in-law, Gideon Pillow, coauthored a resolution calling for the support of the Compromise of 1850. This motion was voted down, but the convention did put aside, at least temporarily, the issue of secession.[4] Brown was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention
Democratic National Convention
in 1852 where Franklin Pierce
Franklin Pierce
and William R. King
William R. King
were nominated. In 1854, he delivered an address to the University of North Carolina's literary societies. Brown attended the 1856 Democratic National Convention, where he was considered a possible vice-presidential nominee.[4] The following year, newly elected president James Buchanan
James Buchanan
appointed him Postmaster General, a position in which he served until his death.[7] Brown died on March 8, 1859, and is interred at Nashville's Mount Olivet Cemetery. Family[edit] Brown married his first wife, Sarah Burrus, at an undetermined date,[2] and they had six children.[4] Following her death, he married Cynthia Pillow Sanders, the sister of Gideon Pillow
Gideon Pillow
and widow of John W. Sanders, and they had one son. Hill McAlister, a great-grandson of Brown, served as Governor of Tennessee
Governor of Tennessee
in the 1930s.[4][8] References[edit]

^ Brown's middle name is sometimes given as "Vail" or "Vaill." ^ a b c d e f g Connie Lester, "Aaron V. Brown," Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture, 2009. Retrieved: 26 September 2012. ^ UT Traditions Archived 2012-04-09 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved: 26 September 2012. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Phillip Langsdon, Tennessee: A Political History (Franklin, Tenn.: Hillsboro Press, 2000), pp. 106, 114-115, 124. ^ Elbert Walker, Governor Aaron Venable Brown Papers, Tennessee
Tennessee
State Library and Archives, 1964. Retrieved: 26 September 2012. ^ Ann Leslie-Owens, "Willie Blount," Tennessee
Tennessee
Encyclopedia of History and Culture, 2009. Retrieved: 26 September 2012. ^ "BROWN, Aaron Venable, (1795 - 1859)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved September 16, 2012.  ^ " Tennessee
Tennessee
Governor Aaron Venable Brown". National Governors Association. Archived from the original on December 2, 2012. Retrieved September 29, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Aaron V. Brown.

United States Congress. " Aaron V. Brown
Aaron V. Brown
(id: B000899)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.  Aaron V. Brown
Aaron V. Brown
at Find a Grave Speeches of Aaron V. Brown
Aaron V. Brown
from Google Books Tennessee
Tennessee
State Library & Archives, Papers of Governor Aaron Venable Brown, 1845-1847 The University of Richmond: Governor Aaron V. Brown
Aaron V. Brown
of Tennessee
Tennessee
and the Question of Slavery National Governors Association

Political offices

Preceded by James C. Jones Governor of Tennessee 1845–1847 Succeeded by Neill S. Brown

Preceded by James Campbell United States Postmaster General Served under: James Buchanan March 6, 1857 – March 8, 1859 Succeeded by Joseph Holt

U.S. House of Representatives

Preceded by Ebenezer J. Shields Member from Tennessee's 10th congressional district March 4, 1839 – March 3, 1843 Succeeded by John B. Ashe

Preceded by William B. Campbell Member from Tennessee's 6th congressional district March 4, 1843 – March 3, 1845 Succeeded by Barclay Martin

v t e

Governors of Tennessee

Sevier Roane Sevier Blount McMinn Carroll Houston Hall Carroll Cannon Polk Jones A. Brown N. Brown Trousdale Campbell Johnson Harris Johnson East Brownlow Senter J. Brown Porter Marks Hawkins Bate R. Taylor Buchanan Turney R. Taylor McMillin Frazier Cox Patterson Hooper Rye Roberts A. Taylor Peay Horton McAlister Browning Cooper McCord Browning Clement Ellington Clement Ellington Dunn Blanton Alexander McWherter Sundquist Bredesen Haslam

v t e

United States Postmasters General

Confederal

Franklin Bache Hazard

Federal

Osgood Pickering Habersham G. Granger Meigs McLean

Cabinet level Post Office Department

Barry Kendall Niles F. Granger Wickliffe Johnson Collamer Hall Hubbard Campbell A. Brown Holt King Blair Dennison Randall Creswell Marshall Jewell Tyner Key Maynard James Howe Gresham Hatton Vilas Dickinson Wanamaker Bissell Wilson Gary Smith Payne Wynne Cortelyou Meyer Hitchcock Burleson Hays Work New W. Brown Farley Walker Hannegan Donaldson Summerfield Day Gronouski O'Brien Watson Blount

U.S. Postal Service

Blount Klassen Bailar Bolger Carlin Casey Tisch Frank Runyon Henderson Potter Donahoe Brennan

v t e

Cabinet of President James Buchanan
James Buchanan
(1857–1861)

Secretary of State

Lewis Cass
Lewis Cass
(1857–1860) Jeremiah S. Black
Jeremiah S. Black
(1860–1861)

Secretary of the Treasury

Howell Cobb
Howell Cobb
(1857–1860) Philip F. Thomas (1860–1861) John A. Dix (1861)

Secretary of War

John B. Floyd
John B. Floyd
(1857–1860) Joseph Holt
Joseph Holt
(1860–1861)

Attorney General

Jeremiah S. Black
Jeremiah S. Black
(1857–1860) Edwin M. Stanton
Edwin M. Stanton
(1860–1861)

Postmaster General

Aaron V. Brown
Aaron V. Brown
(1857–1859) Joseph Holt
Joseph Holt
(1859–1860) Horatio King
Horatio King
(1861)

Secretary of the Navy

Isaac Toucey
Isaac Toucey
(1857–1861)

Secretary of the Interior

Jacob Thompson
Jacob Thompson
(1857–1861)

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 58927609 LCCN: nr90000566 US Congress: B000899 SN

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