People: Malcolm Jason Brown

Name Brown, Malcolm Jason
Place of work Greenwich

Employment dates
19 April 1856 – c. 1860 (RGO6/75)

Observatory posts 1856, Apr 19

Supernumerary Computer

Subsequent posts
by 1861

Clerk in a woollen warehouse

by 1871

Civil Servant (class general, post 6)

Born 1841

Died ?


Known addresses

1 Matilda Place, Greenwich
(from census) 1861

12 Amersham Road, Deptford


Born in Paris, Malcolm J Brown was the second son of George and Pleasant Brown. His father was born in Paisley, Scotland and his mother in Bristol. In the 1851 census, their professions are listed as linen commission agent and teacher.  When he was about 15, Malcolm was taken on at the Observatory as a Boy Computer to work on the 1831–1851 lunar reductions. Other computers taken on at about the same time were Edward Beresford Hanson, William Nash, John Richard Lucas, Charles George Talmage, and Monteford Reginald Dolman. Brown was one of eleven computers recorded as being at the Observatory on 1 January 1860 (RGO6/75). Unlike some of his contemporaries, he is not recorded as having undertaken any observing duties. 

The 1861 census records that by then, he was working as a clerk in a woollen warehouse and that he was living with his mother and elder sister (a French teacher) in a house located a little over a mile and a half from the Observatory near New cross Station.

The 1871 census records that he is married with two children, living in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire and working as a Civil Servant and suggests that he moved there in 1868 or 1869.