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[photo] [photo] Ashton Villa
Photos courtesy of Galveston Historical Foundation
Ashton Villa, the Colonel J. M. Brown House, was built in 1858. Brown, born in New York City in 1821, had been a canal-boat worker on the Erie Canal, and a master brick layer before arriving in Galveston in 1842 or 1843. In Galveston, Brown engaged in the hardware business and attained great wealth. During the Civil War, the prominent Galvestonian was also president of the Galveston, Houston and Henderson Railway and Purchasing Agent in Mexico for the Confederate states. Later he was instrumental in the formation of the First National Bank of Galveston and was its president for some years. The Brown House was the headquarters for the Confederate Army and later the Union Army (the Confederates surrendered Galveston in the fall of 1862 but retook it in January 1863 during the Battle of Galveston Bay). Ashton Villa is a three-story brick house with a slightly projecting central portico, a c. 1890 polygonal wing which projects from its east side, and still later additions to the rear.

Ashton Villa is located at 2328 Broadway St. in Galveston. It is home to the Galveston Island Visitor Information Center and is available for rentals. For further information on rentals call 409-765-3433. For general inquiries call 409-765-7834 or visit the house's website.



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