Inventory of the W. Melvin Brown, Jr. Papers, 1951 - 2005

Magnifying Glass What is this document?

Descriptive Summary

Abstract: William Melvin Brown, Jr. was born on February 19, 1934 in Charleston, South Carolina to William and Eva Taylor Brown. He graduated from Immaculate Conception High School and received a BS in Science from South Carolina State College. Brown later acquired a Master of Science from Atlanta University, a MBA from Webster College, and an Advanced Studies degree from Boston University. Brown married Juanita Washington, also a Charleston native and high school science teacher,on June 4, 1960. They had two children, Tamara Theresa Brown and William Melvin Brown, III. He taught science in Atlanta and Charleston and was Metropolitan Life Insurance Company's first black insurance consultant in Charleston-- before forming the American Development Corporation (ADCOR) in 1972. ADCOR, a defense manufacturing firm in North Charleston, is one of the largest African-American owned firms of its kind. Brown served on the boards of a number of Charleston and South Carolina institutions. In 1993, he became the first African-American to be inducted into the South Carolina Business Hall of Fame and on June 4, 1994 he was inducted into the South Carolina Black Hall of Fame. Brown died on June 7, 1994 at age 60.
The collection contains personal documents, correspondence, photographs, and printed materials relating to Brown and his family-- as well as his many professiional and civic endeavors. Materials in the collection date from the early 1950s until the year 2005, with bulk dates spanning the years 1975-1994.
Title: W. Melvin Brown, Jr. Papers, 1951 - 2005
Creator: Brown, W. Melvin, Jr.
Repository: Avery Research Center at the College of Charleston
Call Number: AMN 1119
Language of Material: Material in English
Extent: 5.55 linear feet
(10 archival boxes)

Biographical Note

W. Melvin Brown, Jr. was born on February 19, 1934 in Charleston, SC to William and Eva Taylor Brown. He graduated from Immaculate Conception High School and received a BS from South Carolina State College. Brown later acquired a Master of Science from Atlanta University, a MBA from Webster College, and an Advanced Studies degree from Boston University.

Brown married Juanita Washington, also a Charleston native and high school science teacher, on June 4, 1960. They had two children, Tamara Theresa Brown and William Melvin Brown, III. He taught science in Atlanta and Charleston and was Metropolitan Life Insurance Company's first black insurance consultant in Charleston-- before forming the American Development Corporation (ADCOR) in 1972. ADCOR, a defense manufacturing firm in North Charleston, is one of the largest African-American owned firms of its kind. ADCOR first appeared on Black Enterprise Magazine's"Top 100 Black Businesses in the U.S." list in 1978 and remained there until Brown's death in 1994.

In addition, Brown served on the boards of a number of Charleston and South Carolina institutions, including North Carolina National Bank (NCNB), Clemson University, Talladega College, the South Carolina Ports Authority, the Charleston Aviation Authority, Porter-Guad School, and the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce. Brown was also a life member and former president of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and the Athenians Social Club, as well as past chairman of the City of Charleston Election Commission.

In 1993, Brown became the first African-American to be inducted into the South Carolina Business Hall of Fame and on June 4, 1994 he was inducted into the South Carolina Black Hall of Fame. Brown died on June 7, 1994 at age 60.


Collection Overview

The collection contains materials relating to the personal and professional life of W. Melvin Brown Jr. It includes personal documents, correspondence, photographs, printed materials, as well as various other materials pertaining to Brown's professional and civic endeavors. Materials in the collection date from the early 1950s until the year 2005, with bulk dates spanning the years 1975-1994.

Series 1. Biographical includes a scrapbook containing obituaries, photographs and other memorabilia from Brown and his family, as well as newspaper and magazine clippings concerning Brown and his company, American Development Corporation (ADCOR). The series encompasses Brown's many accolades, certificates and plaques, which were given to him throughout his professional career-including his induction into the South Carolina Business Hall of Fame, his high school diplomas and Master's degrees. Additionally, it contains visual material, such as photographs dating from Brown's high school days in the early 1950s; up until before his death in 1994, as well as a recorded interview and video profile for Legacy of Leadership, a 26 part series honoring South Carolina Business Hall of Fame laureates. Speeches and essays written by Brown, as well as dates books and his graduate school transcripts can also be found in the series. The series also contains items from Brown's funeral services in 1994, including memorial books and visitor's registries.

Series 2. Professional Career and Affiliations is comprised of materials dealing with Brown's work at ADCOR and various other community and professional organizations including the South Carolina State Public Service Authority, the Board of Directors of NationsBank, the Athenian Social Club, and the Board of Visitors at Clemson University.

Series 3. Financial contains fiscal records and documents, like tax receipts, home mortgages and real estate appraisals. ADCOR's consolidated financial statements and profit sharing plan can also be found in this series.

Series 4. Periodicals, Bound Items and Ephemera consists of magazines, journals, other bound items and ephemera including Brown's 1964 Master's thesis from Atlanta University, issues of Black Enterprise magazine, a calendar commemorating his professional accomplishments and miscellaneous identification and membership cards belonging to him and his wife.

Series 5. Correspondence is comprised of Brown's personal and professional correspondence, as well as posthumous correspondence, such as condolence letters addressed to his wife after Brown's death in 1994.

Series 6. Brown Family includes W. Melvin Brown III's report cards and a biographical sketch on the Brown family, entitled, " To Walk with Kings and Not Lose the Common Touch."

Series 7. Oversize Material contains a large banner advertising an A.M.E. church Pentacost event.

Collection Arrangement

1. Biographical, 1973-1997, undated

2. Professional Career and Affiliations, 1983-1996, undated

3. Financial Records, 1977-1995, undated

4. Periodicals, Bound Items and Ephemera, 1964-2001, undated

5. Correspondence, 1981-2005

6. Brown Family, 1975-1992, undated

7. Oversize Material, 2001



Bibliography

Sources consulted by Ardra Whitney

Avery Research Center preliminary finding aid: W. Melvin Brown (1934-1994) Collection

Avery Research Center vertical file folders: W. Melvin and Juanita Brown

Subject Headings

  • African American businesspeople--South Carolina.
  • African American families--South Carolina.
  • African American fraternal organizations.
  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity--History.
  • Atlanta University.
  • Brown family.
  • Brown, Juanita Elizabeth Washington, 1938-2006
  • Brown, W. Melvin, Jr., 1934-1994
  • Clemson University. Board of Visitor.
  • Defense industries--South Carolina.
  • Funeral rites & ceremonies.
  • Metropolitan Life Insurance Company.
  • NCNB National Bank.
  • Political participation.
  • Scholarships.
  • South Carolina Public Service Authority.
  • South Carolina State College.
  • Webster College.
  • YMCA of Greater Charleston.


Detailed Description of the Collection

1. Biographical, 1973-1997.

This series contains materials related to W. Melvin Brown, Jr.'s life and death, including a scrapbook, newspaper and magazine clippings concerning himself, his family and his company, ADCOR. Also included are speeches and essays written by Brown, as well as his many awards, certificates and plaques. Other items in the series include photographs dating from his high school days in the early 1950s; up until before his passing in 1994, a calendar and video commemorating Brown's accomplishments and visitor's books from his funeral services.
Box 1   Folder 1
Scrapbook, 1950-1997, undated
Contains obituaries for Brown, as well as photographs and other memorabilia from him and his family. Also included are newspaper and magazine clippings concerning Brown and his company, ADCOR.
Box 1   Folder 2-3
Photographs, 1951-1994, undated
Contains photographs dating from Brown's high school days in the early 1950s; up until before his death in 1994.
Box 1   Folder 4-5
Speeches, 1973-1982, undated
Contains several speeches given by Brown including eulogies he wrote for friends and family, high school reunion speeches, and speeches for colleges and university students as well as business and professional associations.
Box 1   Folder 6
Graduate School Transcript, 1975-1976
Box 1   Folder 7-8
Magazine and News Clippings, 1983-1994, undated
Contains numerous clippings related to Brown, his family and his company, ADCOR.
Newspaper articles from The Post and Courier concerning Brown are not in the collection, but can be found on reserve at the Charleston County Library.
Box 1   Folder 9
Appointment Books, 1987-1988
Box 1   Folder 10
Sacred Heart Spiritual Society Folders, 1994
Box 1   Folder 11
Rites of Christian Burial for William Melvin Brown, Jr. Funeral Programs and Card, 1994
Box 1   Folder 12
Visitor's Register from Harleston-Boags Funeral Home, 1994
Box 2   Folder 1-3
Memorial Books from Harleston-Boags Funeral Home, 1994
Box 2   Folder 4
S.M.A. Fathers Perpetual Mass Association Folder Enrolled by Knights of Columbus Memorial, undated
Box 2   Folder 5
VHS Tape: Legacy of Leadership, South Carolina Business Hall of Fame, 1994
Box 3   Folder 1-11
Honors and Awards, 1951-1994, undated
Box 4   Folder 1-4
Honors and Awards, 1951-1994, undated
Box 5   Folder 1-6
Honors and Awards, 1951-1994, undated
Encompasses certificates and plaques, which were given to Brown throughout his professional career-including his induction into the South Carolina Business Hall of Fame, his high school diplomas and Master's degrees.

2. Professional Career and Affiliations, 1983-1996, undated.

This series contains materials dealing with Brown's work at ADCOR and various other community and professional organizations including the SC State Public Service Authority, the Board of Directors of NationsBank, the Athenian Social Club, and the Board of Visitors at Clemson University.
Box 6   Folder 1
State of South Carolina, Law Enforcement Division: State Constables, 1975-1976, undated
Box 6   Folder 2
Charleston Festival Market: Feasibility Study, 1983
Box 6   Folder 3
Athenian Social Club: Constitution and By-Laws, Historical Report/Essay, 1983, 1991, undated
Box 6   Folder 4
South Carolina Public Service Authority Appointment Conformation: Correspondence, Oath for County and State Officers and State of Economic Interests Form, 1983, 1993-1994, undated
Box 6   Folder 5
Clemson University Board of Visitors: Agenda, Bios, Correspondence, Itinerary, Lists and Newsletter, 1986-1989
Box 6   Folder 6
NCNB Corporation: Brochures, Correspondence, Questionnaires (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 6   Folder 7
Santee Cooper Contact List and Portfolio, 1993
Box 6   Folder 8
ADCOR: Bio, Business Overview, Incident Reports, Memorandum, Post Card, Product List, Resume, 1994, 1996, undated
Box 6   Folder 9
W. Melvin Brown Scholarship Endowment Proposal for Schedule of Scholarship, 1997
Box 6   Folder 10
Key Messages - South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families, undated

3. Financial, 1977-1995, undated.

This series includes fiscal records and documents, like tax receipts, home mortgages and real estate appraisals can also be found in this series-in addition to ADCOR's consolidated financial statements and profit sharing plan.
Box 6   Folder 11
Checks, Finance Charges, Income Statements, Mortgage Loan, Receipts (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 6   Folder 12
American Satellite and Television, Inc.: Consolidated Balance Sheets, Correspondence, Fact Sheet, Ownership Report, Memorandum and Receipt, 1982-1983
Box 6   Folder 13
Title and Mortgage Documents/Records, 1986-1993
Box 6   Folder 14
American Communications and Television, Inc.: Company History, Correspondence, Detailed and Preliminary Five Year Projection Reports, Form 10-K (Securities and Exchange Commission Reports), Form 10-Q (Securities and Exchange Commission Quarterly Report) and Press Releases, 1988-1990
Box 6   Folder 15
Tax Documents (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 6   Folder 16
MetLife Insurance Statements (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 6   Folder 17-19
ADCOR and subsidiaries-Consolidated Financial Statements and ADCOR Profit Sharing Plan (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 6   Folder 20-21
Appraisals, 1991-1994

4. Periodicals, Bound Items and Ephemera, 1964-2001, undated.

This series consists of magazines, journals, other bound items and ephemera including Brown's 1964 Master's thesis from Atlanta University, issues of Black Enterprise magazine, a calendar commemorating Brown's professional accomplishments and miscellaneous identification and membership cards belonging to him and his wife.

Periodicals

Box 7   Folder 1-7
Black Enterprise, 1924-1934
Box 7   Folder 8
Dollars and Sense, 1985
Box 7   Folder 9
The 1990 South Carolina 100, South Carolina's Top 100 Businesses Journal Compiled by Arthur Anderson (The Sixth Annual Survey of Closely Held Businesses), 1990
Box 7   Folder 10
Charleston's Trident Black Pages, 1994-1995

Bound Items

Box 7   Folder 11-12
Master's Thesis: A Resource Unit in Economic Botany with Emphasis on Medicinal, Flavoring and Domestic Use, 1964
Box 8   Folder 1
150th Anniversary Celebration of St. Patrick's Catholic Church Souvenir Journal, 1987
Box 8   Folder 2
Congressional Record Proceedings and Debates of the 102nd Congress (Second Session), 1992
Box 8   Folder 3
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority's 41st South Atlantic Regional Conference Public Luncheon: Program, 1994
Box 8   Folder 4
Charleston Chapter of The Links' 4th Annual Spring Luncheon: Program, 1994
Box 8   Folder 5
Minutes of the 69th Anniversary Convention (61st General Convention of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.), 1975
Box 8   Folder 6
Minutes of the 70th Anniversary Convention (62nd General Convention of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.), 1976
Box 8   Folder 7
Quarter Century Club of South Carolina State College's 13th Annual Luncheon Program, 1982
Box 8   Folder 8
South Carolina African-American Role Models Calendar, 1990
Box 8   Folder 9
USS Sierra AD 18 Decommissioning Ceremony Souvenir Journal and Photograph, 1993, undated
Box 8   Folder 10
Junior Achievement of Greater Columbia, Inc. Annual Report, 1993
Box 8   Folder 11
National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education Brochure (Distinguished Alumni of the Year Citation, Vol. 1), undated

Ephemera

Includes identification cards, membership cards and business cards that belonged to Brown.
Box 8   Folder 12
International Dues Book of the Bricklayers, Masons, Plasterers International Union of America, 1976-1980
Box 8   Folder 12
National Defense Executive Reserve Identification Card, 1982
Box 8   Folder 12
Prayer Card from Harleston-Boags Funeral Home, Inc., 1994
Box 8   Folder 12
ADCOR Employee ID Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
ADCOR Tag, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Blue Cross, Blue Shield Preferred Personal Care Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
City Council Campaign Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Clemson Fellows Member Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Clemson University Board of Visitors Name Tag, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Corporate Member of the Association of the United States Army Decal Sticker, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Coastal Video Center, Inc. Member Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Delta Air Lines Flying Colonel Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Delta Crown Room Card Tag, 1993, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Eastern Ionosphere Club Tag, undate
Box 8   Folder 12
NCNB Place Hologram Invitation for Groundbreaking Ceremonies and Reception, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Rosary ring, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
Sheraton Hotel in Jacksonville, Florida Postcard, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
South Carolina Ports Authority Board Member ID Badge, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
South Carolina State Health Plan Identification Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 12
US AIR Frequent Traveler Program Card for Juanita and W. Melvin Brown, Jr., undated
Box 8   Folder 12
U.S. Department of Commerce Member Card, undated
Box 8   Folder 13
NAFEO's 8th National Conference on Blacks in Higher Education Registration Form, 1983
Box 8   Folder 14
Official 1995 Republican Inaugural Invitation, 1994

5. Correspondence, 1981-2005.

This series is comprised of Brown's personal and professional correspondence, as well as condolence letters addressed to his wife following his death in 1994.
Box 8   Folder 15
Correspondence from Fredrina to W. Melvin Brown, Jr., 1981, 1993
Box 8   Folder 16
Correspondence from Robert D. Eggleston at South Carolina Electric & Gas Company, 1984
Box 8   Folder 17
Correspondence: General, 1984-1994
Contains Brown's personal and professional correspondence, including letters from government elected officials, board members and friends congratulating him on his induction into the South Carolina Business Hall of Fame.
Box 8   Folder 18
Greeting Card with Note to W. Melvin Brown, Jr., 1986
Box 8   Folder 19-20
Condolence Letters, 1994, undated
Contains correspondence written to Brown's wife, Juanita Brown, after his death in 1994.
Box 8   Folder 21
Posthumous Correspondence, 1995, 2005
Includes correspondence from community and professional organizations addressed to either Brown or his daughter, Tamara Brown, following his death in 1994.

6. Brown Family, 1975-1992, undated.

The series includes Brown's son, W. Melvin Brown III's report cards and a biographical sketch on the family, entitled, "To Walk with Kings and Not Lose the Common Touch."
Box 8   Folder 22
W. Melvin Brown III's Report Cards (MOVED TO RESTRICTED MATERIAL)
Box 8   Folder 23
Heirs of John Brown Family Reunion Drawing, Invitation and Program, 1988, undated
Box 8   Folder 24
The National Black Family Summit Brochure and Congressional Order, 1992
Box 8   Folder 25
Rites of Christian Burial for Henry Matthews Jackson Funeral Program, Program Drawings and Photographs, 1997
Box 8   Folder 26
Biographical Sketch on the Brown Family:"To Walk with Kings and Not Lose the Common Touch,"1981, 1993
Box 8   Folder 27
Anniversary Book to Parents from W. Melvin Brown III, undated
Box 8   Folder 28
Poem:"The Vacant Chair,"undated

7. Oversize Material, 2001.

This series contains a large banner advertising an A.M.E. church Pentecost event.
Box 10   Folder 1
African Methodist Episcopal Church Banner: "On Our Way To Pentecost,"2001


Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Box nine is restricted.

Copyright Notice

The nature of the Avery Research Center's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The Avery Research Center claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], W. Melvin Brown, Jr. Papers, Avery Research Center, College of Charleston, Charleston, SC, USA.

Processing Information

Processed by Ardra Whitney, 09, 2012

Encoded by Ardra Whitney, 09, 2012

Edited by Aaron Spelbring, 11, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

-