Erhardt Brown.jpg
Judge Erhardt Brown
Biographical information
Date of birth1892
Age (1931)39
Age (1955)63
Age (1985)93 (deceased)
Age (2015)123 (deceased)
Physical description
Hair colorBrown, graying at temples
Eye colorBlue
Behind-the-scenes information
Voiced byRoger Jackson

Judge Erhardt Brown, formerly Erhardt von Braun, was the father of Emmett L. Brown. What is known of him is that he arrived in Hill Valley with the rest of the family in 1908 when they were still known as the von Brauns and that he changed their surname to Brown in the First World War.[1]


Erhardt Brown was born in 1892, and was raised in Germany, he first moved to America when he was a teenager, despite the disapproval of his father. At the time, he did not speak any English and had only two dollars to his name. Eventually he and his father would make amends, but presumably Mr. Von Braun passed away shortly thereafter.[2]

Erhardt would later become a judge, and pressured Emmett into working for him with the intent of him pursuing a career in law. But during the evening on June 13, 1931 in his son's lab, he had an argument with Emmett and made him quit his job and declared his interest in following science.

On October 13, 1931, Erhardt arrived at the Hill Valley Science Expo to prevent Emmett from demonstrating his Electrokinetic levitator (In the unaltered timeline, Emmett did the experiment without Erhardt's knowledge). He objected to it as he believed that Emmett's experiment was an unnecessary risk, only to have changed his mind when Marty made him realize that he was repeating the actions of his own father. Erhardt allowed the experiment to proceed, with the intention of supporting Emmett whether it succeeded or not.

Sometime after, Erhardt would present an annual scholarship called the Erhardt Brown Scholarship for Young Scientists. Doc would continue presenting it as of 1986 after Erhardt had died.

In the 1986B timeline, Erhardt became supportive of Emmett after the success of his and Edna Strickland's Mental alignment meter at the Hill Valley. He died at some time before 1968.[3]

Behind the scenes

Before Back to the Future: The Game, no mention of Judge Brown or Judge von Braun was made in the materials associated with Back to the Future, including the only animated series episode describing Emmett's childhood, "Gone Fishin'", other than the fact that he moved to Hill Valley in 1908 and changed the family name from Von Braun to Brown during the First World War. An additional indirect reference to Erhardt would be made in Part III, when Chester warns Emmett about his low tolerance for whiskey, but serves it to him on the basis that "I ain't your papa, Emmett". Chester likely had no knowledge of Judge Brown, but was meaning to say that because Chester was not Emmett's father, he could not order him not to drink and that Emmett was a grown man who had to make his own decisions.


Notes and references

  1. Back to the Future Part III
  2. Back to the Future: The Game - Episode 5: OUTATIME
  3. Citizen Brown states that Erhardt died before Marty was born.