||Brown, Mary, 1856-1918|
From the Norwich Bulletin, Norwich, Connecticut, January 23, 1918:
The death of Miss Mary M. Brown at Backus Hospital Tuesday morning saddened a host of friends and the different pupils who have had the benefit of her instruction for so many years. Miss Brown was born in Natick, R. I., May 19, 1856. She was the daughter of Lydia A. Higgins and Joseph R. C. Brown. Her common and high school education was received in Rockport, Mass. At the time there was a normal school in Norwich over twenty years ago, she took the course there and was graduated, after which she taught in the Model School in Norwich.
Miss Brown has taught in the Jewett City schools for twenty years. A teacher more faithful to the interests of the scholars and school cannot be found. Her interest in the welfare of her pupils did not cease after they went out from under her care. Her everready pen in poetical compositions for occasions of various kinds was in great demand and the verses were always of a beautiful sentiment, expressed in the best of language. The words for the Christian Endeavor Consecration hymn, "I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go" known and sung wherever sacred music is used, where written by Miss Brown. Her artistic ability was developed in many lines.
She was a woman unusually gifted with literary talent. Miss Brown was a member of the Baptist Church. She was one of the original ten members forming Whatsoever Circle of The King's Daughters and has served as its leader. She was a member of the Ladies' Aid Society and Mission Circle, and had been a teacher in the Sunday school.
A woman faithful in many things has gone to her reward. She is survived by a sister, Mrs. Nettie Johnson of Jewett City, a brother, E. Frank Brown of Woonsocket, R. I., and niece, Miss Marion H. Johnson of Willimantic.
--Submitted to Leonard Ellinwood by Lillian Cathcart, local historian of Norwich, Connecticut. DNAH Archives
Excerpt from letter from Julia Bair to Leonard Ellinwood, 22 August 1977:
I just talked with Mrs. Samuel Cathcart, our local historian, about Mary Brown. She did live in Jewett City in the late 1800's and wrote that hymn around 1890 as you indicated. However, someone changed one word in her original poem and had it copyrighted. She was never known as Charles Gabriel. She was a teacher here in Jewett City and I talked yesterday with one of her pupils! The music of this hymn (Mary Brown's original) was written by an officer in the Jewett City Savings Bank at that time.