Lives of the fellows

Robert Charles (Sir) Brown

b.2 October 1836 d.23 November 1925
Kt(1919) MB Lond LSA FRCS(1862) FRCP(1908) Hon MA Cantab(1912)

Charles Brown was born in Preston, the son of Alderman Robert Brown, F.R.C.S. He was educated at Preston Grammar School and then apprenticed to a colleague of his father’s. He qualified from King’s College, London, in 1858 and held a short house appointment in the General Lying-In Hospital, before returning to Preston in the same year. He now acted as house surgeon in the Preston Dispensary for a period of five years, interrupted by intervals of study at London, Dublin and Edinburgh, in which he obtained the F.R.C.S. qualification, in 1862. Starting practice in 1863, he was not long in acquiring a leading professional position in his native town. From its foundation in 1870 until his death fifty-five years later, he was closely identified with the Preston Royal Infirmary as its honorary medical officer and consulting medical officer and as a benefactor who contributed over £10,000 to its funds. Among other institutions to benefit from his generosity were local hospitals and the Cambridge Research Hospital, which he officially opened in 1912, a day after receiving the honorary degree of M.A. from the University. He received the freedom of Preston in 1910 and was knighted in 1919. Brown was devoted to music; he played the organ in a church and presented organs to several schools and hospitals. A bachelor, he died in the house where he had been born, three years after publishing his reminiscences under the title of Sixty-Four Years a Doctor (1922).

G H Brown

[B.M.J., 1925; Preston Herald, 28 Nov. 1925; Lyle, 75; Plarr, i, 155; Presidential Address to R.C.P., 1926, 27]

(Volume IV, page 487)

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