Jane Douglas Summers Brown: Historian of Catawba Indians, was 104

Historians in the News

Author and historian [Jane] Douglas Summers Brown was so particular about her research and writing that she wrote her own obituary. She gave it to family members who updated it for the Lynchburg (Va.) News & Advance when Brown died Friday.
She was 104.

In 1953, Brown wrote "A City Without Cobwebs," an in-depth history of Rock Hill. The book traces the city's existence from its discovery by European explorers, through the Civil War, Reconstruction and up to the first half of the 20th century.

Brown, a Virginia native, was fascinated by history.

Henry Brown IV, Brown's grandson, said his grandmother always would talk about history when they went for weekly drives through the country.

"When you'd take her out riding, if you went over a creek or a river she'd start telling you the history of the river, what Indians lived on it, what cultures were in the area," he said. "If you went into a town she'd start telling you about the history of the town."

Brown documented the history of the York County-based Catawba Indian Nation in her book "The Catawba Indians: The People of the River."

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