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Posted By: Jean Kramer (email)
Date: 7/15/2003 at 20:12:08

Biography reproduced from page 111 of Volume II of the History of Kossuth County written by Benjamin F. Reed and published in 1913:

Joel G. Taylor is president of the Algona Ice Cream and Candy factory and as such is well known in business circles of the city, a spirit of enterprise and ambition actuating him in all that he has undertaken, so that he has gradually worked his way upward to success. He was born at Port Kent, Essex county, New York, September 13, 1848, a son of Norman P. and Elizabeth Alms (Pike) Taylor, both of whom were natives of Maine. The former removed from the state of New York to Illinois in the year 1855 and after the father’s death the family, then consisting of the mother and two sons, Joel G. and Nyram C., removed to Kossuth county, Iowa, settling in Lotts Creek township in the spring of 1866.

Joel G. Taylor was at that time a youth of eighteen years. His education was largely pursued in the schools of Illinois but at the age of thirteen years he began working on the farm for his father, putting aside his text-books at that time. With the removal of the family to Kossuth county a farm was here purchased and Mr. Taylor conducted its cultivation and improvement for thirty-one years, carefully tilling the fields, season after season, until 1897, when he left the farm and became manager of Cook’s elevator at Hobart, Iowa, where he continued for five and a half years. In 1902 he removed to Algona, where for a period of three years he was the manager of Beer’s elevator. He resigned that position to become connected with the ice cream factory in 1905, at which time he was elected president of the company that now owns and controls the business. The excellence of their product has insured a liberal patronage and their output is now large while the business is a growing one. Modern methods are employed in its conduct and close study of the demands of the trade and honorable dealing have secured gratifying financial results.

On the 12th of November, 1871, Mr. Taylor was married to Miss Ellen Wilkins, a daughter of Charles Wilkins, of Essex county, New York, and to them have been born four children: Charles H., whose birth occurred December 25, 1872; Edwin N., born in 1875; Mary Elizabeth, who is the wife of Harvey Ward, a resident of Curlew, Iowa, and has four children; and Nettie May, who is the wife of Roscoe Bankson, of Sioux City, Iowa.

Mr. Taylor has long been an enthusiastic member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and has passed through all of the chairs in Algona lodge as well as filled all of the offices of the encampment. He is likewise connected with the Rebekahs and is a member of the Court of Honor at Algona. He is most loyal to the teachings of the fraternity, the high principles of which are such as develop honorable manhood and loyalty in citizenship. An interesting incident of his boyhood days well illustrates the patriotism and devotion to his country, when Mr. Taylor on May 4, 1862, enlisted for service in the Civil war in Company C, One Hundred and Forty-seventh Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He was a mere boy at this time and would not reach the age of fourteen until the following September. He passed the state examination for volunteers at Belvidere and Freeport, but when the young men reached Springfield and were there examined by United States army surgeons about five hundred boys out of about thirteen hundred who had enlisted were told to return to their homes on account of age. Mr. Taylor has been a lifelong republican and cast his first vote for president for General U. S. Grant.


Kossuth Biographies maintained by Linda Ziemann.
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