In 1939, Mr. G.A. Brown began building houses in the Fairmont, West Virginia area. After World War II, he was joined by his son, Charles T. Brown. The company grew with their combined efforts and was incorporated in 1957. The emphasis of the work shifted from residential to commercial and industrial work, much of it performed for coal companies or businesses related to mining operations. Most of the projects were in the northern West Virginia area although the company also traveled to western Maryland, Pennsylvania, and eastern Ohio.
In the mid 1960's, David C. Brown joined his father and grandfather and the company opened a retail lumberyard in Clarksburg, West Virginia. This portion of the business grew to an eventual total of seven stores under the name of Brown's Lumber and Supply Company Inc. In 1976, Brown's Lumber and Supply became the parent company of G.A. Brown & Son, Inc. and its affiliated company, Construction Project Management, Inc. which offers construction management services. A third company, Brown Mining Construction, was formed to perform work on coal company property in conformance to UMWA requirements then in effect.
With the decline of work available in the coal industry and industrial work in general, the thrust of the company's efforts again shifted, this time to an emphasis on institutional projects. Operations generally shifted back to northern West Virginia where a number of school, governmental facilities, hospitals, and health-care related projects became the majority of its work. Brown Mining Construction's operations were terminated.
Although experiencing fluctuations due to market conditions, growth continued throughout the 1980's with 1988 and 1989 being the two years of greatest volume in the company's history. In 1990, the operation was down-sized in anticipation of a change of ownership which occurred at the end of the year. The new owner is James E. Brown, an employee of the company since 1974 and its Vice President and General Manager since 1980. He is not related to the former owners.
G.A. Brown & Son, Inc. operates as a general building contractor performing concrete, carpentry, masonry, and interior finishes with its own forces. Some single story steel erection is performed as well as minor site and structural excavation with rented equipment. Mechanical and electrical work are usually subcontracted as are major excavation, steel erection and specialties such as elevators, sprinklers, etc..
The company enjoys an excellent relationship with the medical and technology communities of West Virginia and has developed a group of supervisors and key tradesmen who are experienced in the more technically oriented types of work. Thus it is more likely to be competitive on demanding projects such as hospitals, laboratories, and communications facilities.
The source of labor for the company is the AFL/CIO Building Trades Unions. Management of the company is active in labor relations as well as in the Contractors Association of West Virginia, (AGC) and other trade associations.