Judge Brown graduated from Denison High School in 1943, and left home to attend the University of Texas at Austin before enlisting in the United States Navy to serve in World War II at the age of 17. He was discharged in 1946 and returned to his studies at UT until 1950, when the Korean War began and he went back into the Navy. In 1951, he returned to Sherman and entered private practice. In 1953, he was appointed as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas. In 1959, President Eisenhower appointed Judge Brown as United States Attorney for the Eastern District. He served there until 1961. After meeting and marrying Francis Morehead in Texarkana, Judge Brown moved back to Sherman. In 1985 President Ronald Reagan appointed Judge Brown to fill a new judge’s position that had been created in the Eastern District of Texas. He later took senior status and eventually retired from the bench.
The Paul Brown courthouse joins the Sam B. Hall, Jr. courthouse in Marshall and the William M. Steger courthouse in Tyler as Eastern District courthouses named for former judges. The Beaumont courthouse is named for a former congressman (as is the Marshall courthouse since Judge Hall was also our congressman from 1975-1985), and the Lufkin courthouse for a civic leader. The Texarkana and Plano courthouses are not named.