History is Calling

Abilene entrepreneur and philanthropist C.L. Brown is the subject of a new short film produced by the Dickinson County Historical Society with the support of a KHC Humanities grant.

“C.L. Brown and Kansas Independent Telephony” follows the Brown Telephone Company over the course of the 20th century, from its founding in Abilene in the early 1900s to becoming Sprint in 1989. The film also examines Brown’s investment in the Abilene community, including the Brown Memorial Park and the Brown Memorial Home, a retirement community still in operation today. Brown’s legacy of local philanthropy lives on in Kansas’ over 30 independent telecommunications companies who follow his example of giving back to their communities.