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Francis David Millett Brown

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Colonel Francis David Millett Brown (1837-1895)

1896 Obituary [1]

COLONEL FRANCIS DAVID MILLETT BROWN, V.C., of the Indian Staff Corps, who died at Sandown, Isle of Wight, on the 21st of November, 1896, from pneumonia caused by a chill, was the second son of the late Mr. G. F. Brown of the Bengal Civil Service.

He was born on the 7th of August, 1837, entered the army in 1855, and saw much active service during the Indian Mutiny with his regiment, the 1st European Bengal Fusiliers. In the subsequent operations in Oudh he won the Victoria Cross for great gallantry in rescuing a wounded soldier under heavy fire.

After serving in the Umbeyla Frontier Campaign in 1863, he joined the Indian Public Works Department in 1865 by passing through the Thomason Civil Engineering College, Roorkee, of which Institution he was shortly after appointed one of the Assistant Principals.

From 1867 to 1890 he was employed in executive work, serving as Assistant, Executive and Superintending Engineer in the “Building and Roads ” Branch of the Public Works Department in the North-West Provinces and Oudh. He took a keen interest in road and bridge work and especially in the construction of the cart road from the foot of the hills to the cantonment of Ranikhet - about 30 miles in length - through very difficult country liable to heavy slips.

After a short furlough in 1890 Colonel Brown went back to India as Principal of the Thomason Civil Engineering College, in which he had been educated. He finally returned to England in August, 1892, after an honourable service of thirty-seven years, of which all but ten years had been spent in Civil Engineering. From that time he resided at Tiverton, Devon, where he took an active interest in Church work, forming a battalion of the Church Lads’ Brigade, of which he became the Commandant.

Colonel Brown was buried at Winchester cemetery, the first part of the service being held in the Cathedral, where the colours of his old regiment hang. He will long be remembered by those who knew him as a brave soldier and a kind and gentle man.

He was elected an Associate on the 3rd of May, 1870.

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