TAYLOR FAMILY PAGE
Alexander and Jessie (Burns) Taylor, parents of our subject, were natives of the Parish of Old Kilpatrick, Dunbartonshire, Scotland. They were married in their home parish on December 7, 1834. They crossed the ocean to Canada, in 1835. The father Alexander, taking up one hundred acres of government land, six miles from the Ottawa river, and thirty miles from the nearest post office. There he lived until his death in 1862; his wife died three years later. They were the parents of five children: Catherine Graham, was born in Scotland in 1834. She married Thomas Croak, and lived in Saginaw, Michigan. Marion M, married Mr. Jamieson and died in Canada in 1877, leaving 3 children in the care of her siblings. Helen H. married William McArthur, and lived in Biteley, Michigan. William, who came to Oconto County, in 1867, married Sarah Brockett, and died in the town of Little River in 1885.
Robert Taylor the 5th child was reared in Canada, and received his education at a primitive school of his time. Attending, in all, about two years, a log school house, which for desks had unpainted boards fastened to the walls on three sides of the room, and plank benches, to correspond, for seats. He was 13 years of age, when his first school-was built. In August, 1865, he left home, landing in Cleveland, Ohio, where he lived for two years, being followed by his brother and two sisters. In 1867, he came to Oconto county, Wis., locating in Stiles. Being somewhat of a mechanic, he worked for Ansen Eldred, during the winter, at millwright work, and in the spring he went to Fort Howard, where he worked on the cabin of a new vessel. The same summer going to Little Suamico, he worked for three months on a new sawmill being built by Peters, Olsen & Winas, on the Little Suamico river. Going to West Pensaukee (now Abrams) in the fall of 1868, our subject resided there some years, working at carpenter and millwright work. Here he invented an entirely new device for packing and pressing shingles, on which machine he procured three patents. Although the machine proved to be a practical success, yet it was not a financial one to Mr. Taylor, as he was unable to protect his patents against almost universal infringement all over the country.
Coming to Oconto, in 1871, he worked on a new sawmill being built by Orr, Newell & Co., also on a new sawmill being built by C. S. Hart, six miles north of Oconto. During the winter of 1871-72 he erected a sawmill for R. L. Hall, eight miles north of Oconto. In that neighborhood he lived for twenty-four years, during eight of which he turned his hand to millwrighting, carpentering, engineering and pattern making-in fact, anything that required to be done, patenting one more of his several useful inventions. In 1881 he located at "Hart's Switch," engaging there in the cedar trade, in which he continued for eight years, in the meantime purchasing 120 acres of farm land, which he improved by clearing and building in a substantial manner.
In 1879 Oconto County was divided, creating Marinette County, which caused the immediate formation of the town of Little River, with Mr. Taylor as one of its residents. Being a public-spirited citizen, taking an active part in the advancement of the community, he held the important office of chairman for two terms, 1880-81 and 1883-84; for several years that of justice of the peace and for twelve years he was clerk of School District No. 3. In 1890 he was U. S. census enumerator, for the town of Little River (then embracing the town of Lena). Mr. Taylor, politically, is identified with the Republican party, and in 1870 cast his first ballot, in the town of Pensaukee, after first becoming a fully naturalized citizen of the United States.
On September 30, 1876 Mr. Taylor was married to Miss Henrietta Herriman, who was born in Euclid, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio. Her parents, John Van Rensalear and Mary (Foreman) Herriman, were also natives of Ohio, coming to Oconto county, and settling in what is now Little River, in 1869. Six children have come to Robert and Henrietta Taylor, William A., Marion "Addie", a future principal and Superintendent of Schools in Oconto and Cashmere, Washington. Robert Clinton, Henrietta M., Kate J. and Chester M.Taylor.
Robert B. Taylor was identified as a mechanic living in Peshtigo, Wisconsin when he was married on September 30, 1876. He was living in the Town of Little River, Oconto Co on the 1880 census. He listed his occupation as "King of Carpenter Trade." In 1891, R.B. Taylor sued the City of Oconto for $1219.90 for payment of logs he supplied, and used as piles to support the building of the new courthouse. On the 1900 census, Robert, Henrietta and family were living on Superior St, near the courthouse, in the East Ward of the City of Oconto. He was employed as a carpenter, owned his own home, free of a mortgage. In 1910, Robert and Henrietta were living on Main St in Oconto. Many of the older children had moved away from Oconto. Robert and Henrietta moved to Cashmere, Washington to join many of their children. He died in Cashmere, Washington on March 5, 1917. Henrietta died in Cashmere on June 5, 1927. They are buried in the family plot in the Cashmere Cemetary.
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