The Brown Jug, Brown’s humor magazine, started its life in February 1920. The cover of the first issue displayed a girl in party dress and hat emerging from a bandbox holding a small bear. The cover proclaimed this the “Coming Out Number,” and the masthead identified it as “Vintage of 1920 ... Jugful Number 1.” Its statement of purpose read: “The Brown Jug, a magazine of wit, administered in monthly installments, is published by the Board of Jugglers ... The Brown Jug is on sale on news stands, hotel stands and railroad stations in Providence, New York and Boston.”
Issues of the magazine had a theme, as the “Motor Number,” the “Travel Number,” the “Prom Number,” the recurring “Her Number” of contributions sent in from women’s colleges, and the “Carpet-Bagger Number,” which disparaged the commuting students who, according to the Jug, lacked school spirit. Edward Kip Chace ’26 wrote monthly installments of “The Nobbsey Twins on the Campus,” and S. J. Perelman ’25 began his work as a cartoonist. As his captions grew longer, he decided to become a writer. Perelman became a noted American humorist and wrote motion picture scripts for the Marx brothers. Others of the “Jugglers,” as the staff of the magazine called themselves, were Duncan Norton-Taylor ’26, who became managing editor of Fortune magazine, and William A. Dyer ’24, who became general manager and vice-president of the Indianapolis Star and News. The Jug hung on in its final year by becoming a semi-literary magazine. In the fall of 1933 it ceased publication. Dean Samuel T. Arnold announced, “The demand for publications of this type appears to have waned considerably during recent years and the absence of financial support which the Brown Jug formerly enjoyed has dictated changes in editorial policy and in the scope and content of the periodical which are not consistent with the original purpose.” In January 1967 there was a revival of the Brown Jug which continued into the fall of 1968. It was not the same.