Frank Brewer

It is a well authenticated fact that success comes as a result of legitimate and well applied energy, unflagging determination and perseverance in a course of action when once decided upon. She is never known to bestow her favor upon the indolent and ambitionless, and only those who seek her untiringly are recipients of her blessings.

In tracing the history of the influential business man and representative citizen whose name introduces this sketch it is plainly seen that the prosperity which he enjoys has been won by commendable qualities, and it is also his personal worth that has gained for him the high esteem of those who know him.

F. A. Brewer was born November 28, 1854, in Oakland County, Michigan, the second in order of birth of the six children born to Addison P. and Salinda S. (Graifs) Brewer. His father was a civil engineer and surveyor by profession, and became one of the pioneer lumbermen of southern Michigan, probably having had as much as any other man to do with the cutting off of the great pine forests which at one time covered great districts in the southern part of the state. He died in 1905, in Saginaw, Michigan, where he had resided during the greater portion of his life.

F. A. Brewer received a fair education in the public schools of his home community, and when old enough became associated with his father in the lumber business, remaining with him for five years. In 1880 he removed to Duluth, Minnesota, where he formed a partnership with a Mr. Duncan, under the firm name of Duncan & Brewer, and engaged in the lumber business. They were successful in that enterprise, and in 1900 the concern was incorporated, Mr. Brewer becoming president of the company and Mr. Duncan its secretary and treasurer. This company was one of the pioneer lumber companies in this section of Minnesota, cutting and sawing a large amount of timber, and continued in active operation until the accessible timber in Minnesota and Michigan was practically exhausted. This company also engaged extensively in the logging and lumber business in the southern states until about 60 per cent of the timber in Alabama and Louisiana had been cut off. One of Mr. Brewer’s sons is now engaged in southern operations. Since 1904 Mr. Brewer has not actively followed the lumber business, being interested in other lines of industry. While he has given a great deal of his attention to the lumber business, he has also been financially interested in a number of other industrial enterprises, and in this way he has been a potent factor in the development of the commercial life of Duluth, being a director in several of the most important business enterprises operating in Duluth. He has taken a great pride in its growth, and has consistently boosted the city and its interests wherever and whatever way possible.

In 1877, in Saginaw, Michigan, Mr. Brewer was married to Jennie Duncan, and to them have been born three children, Charles D., Florence and Walter D. Mr. Brewer is a member of the Chamber of Commerce Club, the Kitchi Gammi Club and the Duluth Golf Club. He has taken a keen interest in the public affairs of his city, especially as pertaining to educational affairs, and for twelve years he gave effective and appreciative service as a member of the City School Board. He is proud of Duluth and of the grand state of Minnesota and zealous of their prosperity and progress. He is a man who in every respect merits the high esteem in which he is universally held, for he is a man of public spirit and exemplary character.


  • Van Brunt, Walter, ed. Duluth and St. Louis County, Minnesota Vols. 1 – 3. The American Historical Society. Chicago: 1922.
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