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Joseph King Brittain
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Birth: Dec. 27, 1867
Mercer County
Pennsylvania, USA
Death: Jan. 11, 1942
Cook County
Illinois, USA

Joseph King Brittain (18671942) Biographical Sketch [Waterman, 1908]

Joseph King Brittain, identified with the real estate business of Chicago for nearly twenty years, and now a member of the firm of Wm. H. Brown Company & Brittain, extensive dealers in North Dakota farm lands, as well as in local property, is a native of Greenville, Mercer county, Pennsylvania, where he was born December 27, 1867. His parents were Jeremiah Reed and Nancy Davidson (King) Brittain, his father, now deceased, being for may years a minister of the United Presbyterian church, while his grandfather, Joseph Brittain, was a prominent farmer of Beaver county, Pennsylvania.

After passing through the public and high schools of Greenville, Mr. Brittain pursued more advanced courses at Thiel College, also located in his native town, and when of age came to Chicago in search of broader and more varied opportunities than he could find at home. In 1889 he started his real estate career as a rent collector on a very small salary, but within a few months so proved his capabilities that he was placed in the sales department of the firm, an on New Year's day of 1891 opened an office and established a real estate business under the name of J. K. Brittain & Co. His original location was No. 2 Sherman street; in 1893 he moved to 100 Washington street, and May 1, 1896, to 155 LaSalle street, where the business of the firm was transacted until its consolidation with Wm. H. Brown & Company in 1901.

In the year named a copartnership was formed with William H. Brown, then of Devil's Lake, North Dakota, but who moved to Chicago, the firm of Wm. H. Brown Company & Brittain establishing large and convenient offices on the second floor of the Tacoma building, corner of Madison and LaSalle streets. There it is still transacting a large business in Chicago real estate, farm lands and farm mortgages, carrying especially large tracts of North Dakota realty. The firm has also large and growing departments in renting and insurance.

In his individual relations, Mr. Brittain is an influential member of the Chicago Real Estate Board, of whose street railway committee he was secretary for the years of 1904, 1905 and 1906. He has been active in the organization of the Wentworth Avenue and Protective Association, having served as its president for three years and being still a director.

On June 15, 1896, Mr. Brittain married Miss Harriet D. Borland, daughter of the late James A. Borland, who, for years, was associated with the wholesale department of Marshall Field & Co. They have one child, Ashleigh Woodruff Brittain, and the family residence is at No. 7126 Princeton avenue. Mr. Brittain is a Republican and a member of the widely-known Hamilton Club. For many years he has been a leader in the religious and charitable work of the Normal Park Presbyterian church, of which he has been an elder for five years.

Historical Review of Chicago and Cook County and Selected Biography. A. N. Waterman, editor. Chicago and New York: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1908. Volume III.
pages 1231-1232.

Chicago (Illinois) Tribune
Tuesday, 13 Jan 1942

Funeral Service to Be Held Today.

Services for Joseph King Brittain, prominent Chicago real estate dealer who died late Sunday in his home at 10159 South Leavitt street, will be held at 2 p.m. today in the chapel at 1971 West 111th street.

Mr. Brittain was born in Greenville, Pa., 74 years ago, and came to Chicago in 1887. In 1891 he established the real estate firm of Joseph K. Brittain & Co. He was frequently employed as an expert in real estate appraising and housing.

Former President of Board.
He had been a member of the Chicago Real Estate board since 1898, and was its president in 1926. He was a charter member and past president of the Illinois Association of Real Estate Boards, and charter member and past treasurer of the National Association of Real Estate Boards.

Mr. Brittain was chairman of the executive committee of the late Gov. Horner's tax conference, which prepared a report for the legislature in 1931. He was a charter member and director of the Chicago Regional Planning association, a member and past vice president of the Chicago Association of Commerce, a member of the Downtown council, and a director of the Greater Central District association and the Citizens Association of Chicago. He was also a former director of the Union League club.

Slum Clearance Advocate.
Mr. Brittain was an outstanding advocate of legislation which would enable private corporations to engage in slum clearance thru construction of low rental housing projects. As head of the Illinois Association of Real Estate Boards in 1922, he fathered the enabling legislation which created zoning in Illinois.

Surviving are his widow, Harriett Borland Brittain; a son, Ashleigh W., a grandson and two granddaughters.
Family links: 
  Jeremiah Reed Brittain (1839 - 1903)
  Nancy Davidson King Brittain (1841 - 1920)
  Ella D. Brittain Waters (1866 - 1930)*
  Joseph King Brittain (1867 - 1942)
  Lillian Brittain Young (1870 - 1940)*
  Mary Eva Brittain (1872 - 1914)*
  Howard McJunkin Brittain (1875 - 1948)*
  Paul Jeffers Brittain (1877 - 1878)*
*Calculated relationship
Oak Woods Cemetery
Cook County
Illinois, USA
Maintained by: Pam
Originally Created by: JErikLarson
Record added: Jun 06, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 70941669
Joseph King Brittain
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Added by: RAM
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Gone but not forgotten
- Pam
 Added: Dec. 12, 2011

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