I'm back in time visiting the Browns in the 1780s just after their beautiful mansion on the hill was built. It was the first grand mansion up on the hill now known as Benefit Street. John Brown could see his ships coming in to Providence Cove from all over the world. He liked to be able to see them from his house. The Browns were not at home when I called but the housekeeper allowed me to show you around. For a full tour visit http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8AaOGbNi5ZtVF9w
This is Mr. Mason! Remember him?
This is Sally, John Brown's middle daughter. I met her too.
This is what Providence looks like in John Brown's day.
You can just make out the steeple of the white church in the background.
This is the informal parlor where Mr. Brown did his business, Mrs. Brown took tea and daughter Sally played the forte piano. The desk behind me is the famous rare nine shell desk by a local furniture maker. The squirrels on the wallpaper represent industriousness.
This is Mrs. Brown's bedroom
John Brown was involved in the slave trade. It was one of many businesses he was involved in. Here in Rhode Island they made rum and sent it to Africa to get slaves and sent slaves to the West Indies to harvest sugar cane and make molasses to turn into rum. When the Brown brothers had an ill-fated voyage with many dead slaves, brother Moses had a change of heart. He sued his brother to give up the slave trade and John refused. He did give up one of his ships though. This exhibit reminds us of the forgotten history of some of the people who lived in this house.