Louis Stanley Brown: The University’s First African American Graduate
Louis Stanley Brown, the first African-American graduate of The University of Scranton, then St. Thomas College, earned his commercial degree in 1919. Prior to matriculation, he attended St. Cecilia’s Academy in Scranton. After graduation, he worked as a shoe shiner, a laborer in the coal mines and, later, for G.W. Brown, a local trucking company.
Brown, who grew up in Scranton and lived here most of his life, was one of five children born to Henry and Sarah C. Brown. According to an issue of the Aquinas published during his graduation year, he was “ambitious and industrious” and had “enjoyable wit and good will.”
He died at the age 62 and is buried in the Cathedral cemetery in Scranton.
About Louis Stanley Brown Hall
Built in 1896, Louis Stanley Brown Hall is an example of a transitional phase of commercial architecture that took place in Scranton at the end of the 19th century. Brown Hall exemplifies both the Classical Revival and Commercial Style of architecture with reduced exterior ornamentation and large expanses of glass, which was a style less prevalent in buildings constructed in downtown Scranton until the 1920s.
The University of Scranton acquired the building in 2012. It currently houses the Enrollment Management and External Affairs and University Advancement divisions, and the University’s Small Business Development Center.