ELMER FREEMAN ADAMS.
The ability to step out of the beaten paths and take advantage of opportunities toward which the multitude do not
gravitate, has undoubtedly been the cause of the prosperity which has come to Mr. Adams, who is well known throughout
Sonoma county as a manufacturer of commodities made from paper, such as egg case fillers, berry boxes, butter cartons,
egg cartons, shoe boxes, paper dishes and chicken boxes. The chicken box manufactured by Mr. Adams is an improvement
over the old fashioned wooden box formerly used in the shipment of day old chicks by express from the numerous
hatcheries that form so large a part of the business activity in Petaluma and the surrounding country, an innovation
which has been well received, in that it is filling a long felt and needed improvement, and shippers and users
generally are sincere in their praise of Mr. Adams' welcome invention.
A native of the middle west, E. F. Adams was barn in Cook county, Ill., January 16, 1864, the son of Orville and
Effie (Bliss) Adams, who had passed the greater part of their lives in that section of the Union. Although he was
reared in a farming community Mr. Adams was not attracted to farming as a life calling, having an adaptation rather
for business life, and in following this natural bent he not only made a success of his undertakings financially,
but he has also been congenially employed, which is half of the battle of life. During young manhood he learned
the papermaking trade in Illinois, serving an apprenticeship in mills in Marseilles, and after following the business
there for some time, accepted the position of superintendent of the egg case filler and paper box department of
the Crescent Paper Company, in Marseilles, and remained there until 1904, when he became associated with the Howe
& Davidson Company of the same place, and remained with the latter company until coming to the west. It was
with the practical experience of several years that he came to California in 1906 and established the business
of which he is today the proprietor. His entire capital at that time was only $700, so his equipment at first was
small and unpretentious, but the excellent trade in egg case fillers and paper boxes which he soon built up, enabled
him to extend and enlarge his equipment, until he now has a finely equipped plant, all of the best and most approved
machinery having been installed. As he is a natural mechanic and an inventor of no mean ability, he is constantly
on the alert to make improvements and the strip machine in use in his plant was the first and most important of
these innovations. By its use he can make egg fillers of any size, and the output has also been materially increased,
ninety cases or ten thousand fillers being an average nine hour day output since its invention and installation.
Subsequently he installed an automatic filler machine which has a capacity of twenty eight thousand eight hundred
fillers in twenty four hours In the box manufacturing department he has the latest machines for the purpose. Taken
all in all Mr. Adams has given the manufacturing interests of Petaluma a lively stimulus since he came to the town
in 1906, and every year adds to his influence as citizen and upbuilder of the community. At the present time (1911)
he gives employment to thirty people, and the annual pay roll of the manufactory amounts to $10,000. His trade
is not limited to the county or state in which he resides, but extends to Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Nevada,
New Mexico, Alaska and Honolulu.
Mr. Adams' marriage was celebrated in Illinois in 1889 and united him with Miss Susie Tice, a native of that state.
Four children have been born of their marriage, Claud, Wallace, Howard and Gladys. Being what is justly termed
a self made man Mr. Adams certainly deserves the prosperity which he now enjoys. In his political views he is thoroughly
independent, preferring to vote for the man and the principle rather than for the party. Fraternally he holds membership
in the Odd Fellows organization. He is an active member of the Merchants Association and the Chamber of Commerce.
While a resident of Marseilles, Ill., he was an active member of the Howe & Davidson Fire Company, of which
he was captain.
History of Sonoma County, California
With a Biographical Review
History by Tom Gregory
Historic Record Company
Los Angeles, California 1911
Sonoma County, CA
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