Alabama Department of Archives and History
William Phineas Browne
Lawyer and politician William Phineas Browne (1804-1869) was also an Alabama coal industry pioneer. In 1851, Browne established
mining operations near Montevallo and by the late 1850s was delivering coal in the thousands of tons. He also built "Brighthope,"
an iron-processing blast furnace and forge, on the Little Cahaba River.