On This Day In Alabama History: Mary Ward Brown, Acclaimed Fiction Writer, Died

| May 14, 2019 @ 5:00 am

By Alabama NewsCenter Staff

May 14, 2013

Mary Ward Brown, whose collection of short stories, “Tongues of Flame,” earned her widespread fame relatively late in life, died in Marion at the age of 95. Brown was born in Perry County in 1917 and became editor of her high school and college newspapers. She married Kirtley Brown, who worked in public relations at Auburn University, in 1939. She wrote little in the following years, but after the death of her husband in 1970 she began writing again and was published in several magazines and short story anthologies. “Tongues of Flame” was published in 1986 and was a literary sensation, winning numerous awards. Her second collection, “It Wasn’t All Dancing,” came out in 2002 to more acclaim. Many of her stories examined themes of race relations and religion in the Deep South. Brown was inducted into the Alabama Women’s Hall of Fame in 2017.

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