Business & Finance: Texas Wonder Boys

On the banks of the slow-flowing Ship Channel 15 miles outside Houston squats one of the most remarkable shipyards in the whole U.S.—yet most citizens have never heard of it. Its name: Brown Shipbuilding Co. Its achievement: low-cost mass production of small naval vessels in one-third Navy-schedule time. Its management: dapper, energetic Herman Brown, 50, and fast-thinking, early-rising George Brown, 44, a pair of six-foot brothers who were construction contractors only 18 months ago. Last week Brown Shipbuilding christened the destroyer escort S. S. Tomich, the eighth ship launched in eight days and...

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