American Whiskey Baron’s Historic Mansion Discovered in Sherman
Whiskey Baron’s Historic Mansion Discovered in Sherman with ties to Jack Daniel’s, The Brown Family
SHERMAN -The Grand House, a new B&B, Wedding and Event Center, has discovered the original home of VERNON BROWN (1859-1916). Former Board of Director and a founding member of The Brown Family - recently ranked the 20th “Richest Family in the US” (as reported by Time Magazine, 2016) has already made Texas history as the namesake of Vernon, Texas. Today, The Brown Family owns and operates over 26 famous National Alcohol Brands including Jack Daniels, Jim Beam, Southern Comfort, Old Forrester Whisky, and others. Old Forrester was the Brown-Forman Company’s first successful brand. Founder and Vernon’s Uncle, George Garvin Brown, was the first to individually bottle and seal whisky for sale; to ensure his customers got quality, pure whisky - novel at the time when bottles were refilled at the local saloon. The Brown-Forman Company changed that, and sold their whiskey direct to consumers connecting with them at railroad stations. “Whisky barrels in Saloons were often stretched with unimaginable things like spittle and other “fluids” in an effort to make it last until the next barrel arrived off the railroad”, per “Mac” Brown, retired VP of Brown-Forman, patriarch of the Brown Family and currently Chairman of Kentucky GOP Party who has confirmed and corroborated this significant discovery.
“The Grand House” an Early Neoclassical Revival Mansion, commenced construction in 1900, its completion taking over 2 years, and built with electricity, a first in its time. L-shaped and modern in its livability, this historic gem is virtually unchanged boasting over 5,000 covered square feet, 7 fireplaces each unique with mantel carvings and original Italian tile, huge windows, tall ceilings, stained glass, crystal doors, elegantly patterned inlaid wood floors, countless chandeliers, anchored by a grand soaring staircase in matching mahogany woodwork. Fully restored, the house is a historic work of architectural art, striking a perfect balance of victorian beaux-arts opulence with modern convenience encompassed by beautiful gardens and landscaped grounds on the wide boulevard of Grand Avenue in the heart of Historic Sherman next to Austin College - Texas’s Oldest College.
The house stands situated at the crossing of the Texas Pacific Railroad and the Interurban (now removed), the first electric railroad in Texas, running from Denison through Sherman, in front of the home on Grand Avenue, to Dallas and terminating finally in Waco. Sherman, located near the halfway mark between the coasts and serviced by over four railroads, was paramount to the Brown-Forman company early success with incredible access to the nation via rail, conveniently within reach from Vernon Brown’s doorstep. Wife of Vernon Brown, Ella Depew Brown was “born a Tuck”, as she frequently pointed out. Daughter of Hiram Newton Tuck, a founding pioneer of Sherman, he was a Grayson County Commissioner, Tax Accessor, and Grand Master of the local Masons lodge. He and his brother, Lon Tuck attracted Austin College from Huntsville, Texas and platted all of College Hill around the then proposed location. The house is located only steps away from Austin College on top of the hill and next to the historic transcontinental railroad as a monument celebrating the historic fabric of North Texas, the City of Sherman, Austin College, the Brown Family, and The Brown-Forman Corporation.
Today, the home is open and operated as “The Grand House” a preeminent DFW Wedding and Event Venue, Luxury B&B, and One-of-Kind Vacation Rental. The Grand House is dedicated to preserving history, to make yours.