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Encyclopedia Dubuque


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BROWNSON, Orestes Augustus

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Ancestry: https://www.ancestry.com/family-tree/person/tree/105672829/person/232186740457/facts?_phsrc=cbC129&_phstart=successSource

Brownson, Orestes Augustus (Ithaca, NY, Mar. 18, 1828--Rockdale, IA, Apr. 30, 1892). Brownson was the principal of Dubuque's First Ward School from 1863 to 1878. He was later the principal of the Dodge Street school. (1)

Brownson is best remembered, however, as the editor of the DUBUQUE CHESS JOURNAL beginning in 1870. (2) Brownson was known at the time for his collection of chess problems by American "composers" and by his "elementary exercises in the construction of Chess Problems [sic]." Included in the advice he offered was "to learn chess quick and fast, play slowly and carefully several hours a day and study the best chess books you can get hold of very diligently and thoroughly: this will soon bring out what chess there is in you, if you are careful to play only with chess players stronger than yourself. As you live far from a large city, two or three hundred games by correspondence would be of assistance to you."

In 1872 Brownson was the author of The Book of the Second American Chess Congress Held at Cleveland, Ohio.

He sold his interest in the journal including manuscripts and books in 1876 to Russell & Hallock of Hannibal, Missouri who published the journal from there. (1)

Brownson also played an important role in the life of Theophilus Augustus THOMPSON.



1. "Passed Peacefully Away," Dubuque Daily Herald, April 30, 1892, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18920430&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

2. Ibid.

3. "Chess," Dubuque Herald, April 18, 1876, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18760418&printsec=frontpage&hl=en