Family Histories
of the Swan River Valley
Manitoba, Canada
Pioneer Centennial
History Book
100 Years in the
Swan River Valley
1898 - 1998

Jack and Charlotte Brown

For the Brown Family of Durban, Manitoba, history started with two brothers. Jack Brown and his wife Charlotte Edmunds and family moved from Rutherglen in 1899 and settled on the homestead 34-34-28. Two years later in 1901, Jack’s brother Henry Brown moved to the Valley from Rutherglen, Ontario. Henry purchased 3/4 of a section of land from Canadian Northern Railway, 33-34-28.

Henry Brown and his wife Emily Church had a family of nine boys and one girl: Ernest, Alfred, William, John, Emma, Rueben, Samuel, Foster, Richard, and Austin. Henry Brown was a successful farmer and in 1922 built a new large modern home that is still in use on SE 33-34-28. Henry resided on his farm until his death on February 21, 1935. Upon the occasion of Emily (Church) Brown’s death in 1949, it was reported that Henry and Emily’s descendants numbered, ten children, 46 granchildren and 69 great-granchildren.

Samuel Brown married Mary Cavanagh on November 15, 1922. Samuel raised two children Stanley and Albert. Samuel farmed a quarter section of 33-34-28 until his retirement in 1950 when his son Stanley took over the family farm. Samuel Brown, after his retirement to Swan River, became the caretaker of the United Church in Swan River for several years. His first wife Mary, died in November 1955. Samuel remarried Ethel Dell on March 21, 1962. Shortly after this he moved to Birch River and later to Chatham, ON. Samuel Brown died on April 22, 1988 at the age of 95 in Chatham, ON.

Stanley married Emily Burnett on November 29, 1950. Stanley still lives on the farm that we took over from his father in 1950. Stanley also farmed some land south of Kenville on the Duck Mountain. He still owns one quarter on the mountain and cuts wood which he sells to residents of the Swan River Valley. Stanley retired from farming in November 1997, when he leased his land to a neighbor. He said that from the time he started farming with his father he had put in 60 crops on that same quarter section. Stanley and Emily raised a family of four girls: Florence married George Ward of Wilkie,SK. Muriel married Harold Griffiths of Lumsden,SK., Helen married Ron McEwen of Regina, SK. Shirley married John Jones of Kenville, now of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Stanley and Emily have nine grandchildren.

Submitted by: Emily Brown


Manitoba's Swan River Valley is an area rich in history. These family histories were a part of the 1998 Pioneer Centennial History Book project. If you would like the history of your area available online, have your historic group contact the Key Rock Group for information on electronic publication. We offer publication free of charge and also provide the option for making your history book available on CD.