This column from the May 8, 1944 edition of the Daytona Beach News-Journal tells how Brownie got both his bank account and his dog house.
The column mentions that there was a DAILY story in the newspaper updating the town of Brownie’s condition while the beloved dog was in the hospital.
We are adding a search of the News-Journal archives to our to do list to find these daily mentions.
The column is by Henry McLemore, who was a nationally syndicated sports columnist, who lived in Daytona Beach and was quite controversial in his political views. He did publicity for the Daytona International Speedway the last 4 years of his life. He died in 1968. I haven’t found much about his life, but this article covers some of the controversy and explains his importance at the time.
Here is the full text of the column by Henry McLemore:
Our town is perhaps the only one in the U.S. in which every citizen owns at least a part of a dog.
The dog’s name is Brownie, we guess. Every one started calling him that when, some 5 years ago, he took up residence on one of our busiest corners.
He has no master, no mistress, no one has ever known where he came from, and no one has ever come to claim him as his own dog.
Brownie is a great big brown mongrel who loves to be patted and he must get more patting than any dog in the world. No one passes the corner without stopping to pass the time of day with him and give him a pat.
A few weeks ago Brownie strolled into the street and was hit by an automobile. It was then that the town really came to realize how much a part of it Brownie was. A taxi driver picked him up and took him to a vet’s and then posted a little sign with a little box on it saying, “Brownie has been hurt and is at the veterinarian’s. Would you like to help out with his hospital bill?”
In half an hour there was $32 in Brownie’s box. Until he go out of the hospital there was a daily story in the paper telling of his progress.
Brownie had never had a real house to live in as far as we know. He always slept in a doorway near the corner. But he came back from the hospital to one of the nicest little dog houses anyone ever saw.
The boys who run the taxi stand on the corner spent their spare time during Brownie’s absence in building the house. On the day he was to come home the taxi drivers drew lots as to which one would have the honor of delivering Brownie back to his home on the corner.
Word that Brownie would be home had gotten around the neighborhood, and restaurant owners saved not only the scraps they always keep for Brownie, but a few juicy steaks and a pork chop or two.
So much money was collected for Brownie that he now has a tidy bank account in his own name in case he gets hurt again or needs to be taken care of in his old age.
Brownie is a dog with great dignity. He doesn’t run or frolic around his corner, or jump on you when you pass. Early in the morning he selects a shady place which he thinks will be the coolest for the day and hold court there. One of his favorite spots is just outside the bank door and it is very encouraging to have Brownie wag approval at you before you go in the bank and start talking big-mouth to a vice-president about that little old bit of money you could use right handily at the moment.
Yeah, Brownie is quite a dog.