NC farmer featured in Biden ad talks family legacy, owning farmland his ancestors were once enslaved

Akilah Davis Image
Wednesday, November 22, 2023
NC farmer featured in Biden ad about family's legacy
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The Brown Family Farms & Produce provides seasonal jobs and teaches kids where their food comes from.

WARREN COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- Patrick Brown first learned to drive tractors on the property he was raised on at ten years old. It's also where his father taught him what it meant to be part of the Brown family legacy.

"When my great grandfather was enslaved the owners' last name was spelled Browne. We weren't allowed to keep the e. This last name means a lot to me," said Patrick Brown.

His great-grandfather Byron Brown was an enslaved man turned sharecropper after the Civil War. He worked in Warren County and saved his money to buy land.

"This particular tract we farm on right now which is 165 acres is what was willed to my grandfather. My grandfather willed it to my dad who willed it to me. Now I'm being a good steward of the land," he said. "It's where I was born and raised. This is my foundation."

It's part of what landed the family's legacy in this Biden campaign political ad.

"This means more than working for someone else. When you can actually work on the land you inherited," said Brown.

It's something his nephew, Justice White, is proud to be part of.

"I could have had any family or any parents, but God gave me the parents and family I have," said White.

Giving back to the community is a big part of what they do. The Brown Family Farms & Produce provides seasonal jobs and teaches kids where their food comes from.

On the property sits a high tunnel that allows Brown to increase access to fresh foods for those living in the rural area. Both of his nephews spent the day boxing greens and sweet potatoes to distribute to the community.

Patrick Brown is proud to stand on the shoulders of his father, grandfather and great grandfather. He now carries the Brown torch and trains up the next generation.

"Now my ancestors can sleep peacefully," he said.