Judge Frederick W. Brune - 1894-1972
Judge Brune was a distinguished citizen of Baltimore. His early education was at the Country School for Boys (now Gilman School). After completing his first year of college at Johns Hopkins University, he transferred to Harvard where he took his B.A. and entered the law school. Between his second and third years of law study, Judge Brune entered the military service and served in a World War I ambulance unit in France. By the end of the war he was an officer in U.S. Army Intelligence.
After graduating from Harvard Law School and gaining a perfect score on the Maryland Bar Examination, Judge Brune entered the practice of law in Baltimore. Between 1923 and 1927 he was a partner in Coleman, Fell, Morgan and Brune. In 1927 the firm became Morgan and Brune; however, the next year the firm merged with Semmes, Bowen and Semmes, the firm with which he remained associated until his appointment to the court in 1954. He served as Chief Judge on the Court of Appeals of Maryland for ten years.
Judge Brune's public service was broad and demanding. He served on the Board of Overseers of Harvard University, was President of the Maryland Historical Society and served on the boards of Goucher College, Union Memorial and the Maryland School for the Blind. After retirement he immersed himself in the revision of the state criminal code, serving as Commission Chairman at the time of his death.
After Judge Brune's parents died when he was a young boy, he went to live with his uncle, John J. Donaldson, a prominent local attorney. It was Mr. Donaldson's personal library, much of it inherited from his family, on which Judge Brune built his excellent collection of legal materials. In his bequest of his library to the Law School, Judge Brune requested that the books be kept and identified as the Donaldson Collection. These books form the basis of the Library's developing collection of early legal publications.
(Image: Portrait of the Honorable Frederick W. Brune, on display at the entrance of the Brune Room)