Frank Donaldson Brown was born on Feb. 1, 1885, in Baltimore, Maryland. He was the son of J. Willcox Brown and Ellen Turner MacFarland. He had a twin sister who died in infancy. Frank had 10 older brothers and sisters and one younger brother. His family descended from a Scotch-Irish family that had immigrated to Virginia in the 1700s. His father, a colonel in the Confederate Army, was the head of a wealthy family.
Currently, the home sits on 23 of the original acres of the estate and continues to allow visitors to enjoy the magnificent views from atop the cliff, Mount Ararat (a rock cliff overlooking the Susquehanna River, located between Port Deposit and Perryville in Cecil County, Maryland).
The University System of Maryland owns the property and the mansion is administered by the University of Maryland, Baltimore.