Biography of John Maxwell
Madison County, NY Biographies





Maxwell, John, son of James and Jane (Tait) Maxwell, was born in the town of Lindon, Cattaraugus county, N. Y., March 31, 1845. His father, a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, came to this country in 1835, and settled in Lindon upon the farm where he resided until his death. He was a well known citizen and served frequently as supervisor and in other town offices. John Maxwell received an education confined to the district schools, and assisted in the conduct of his father's farm until he was twenty one years old. He then went to Cuba, Alleghany county, where he remained six years in the employ of S. K. Cutter, a builder, lumber dealer, and contractor, with whom he learned that business. In January, 1873, he removed to Rochester and was engaged by the Empire Moulding Works as superintendent of the manufacture of moulding, lumber buyer, etc. He began business for himself in 1874 as a manufacturer of caskets and mouldings in the Michaels building on Mill street with store rooms on State street. After the first year he formed a partnership with C. H. Newman and James T. McManus under the firm name of Maxwell, Newman & McManus. The growth of the business was rapid, and it being found necessary to secure larger quarters, a factory in the rear of number 22 and 24 South St. Paul street was leased, the entire building above the first floor being utilized. After a short period Mr. Newman retired and was succeeded in the firm by P. J. McWeeney and Hosea Rogers, forming the firm of Maxwell, McWeeney & Co. About sixty men were employed with an average weekly output of 250 caskets and the firm continued in successful and constantly growing business until 1879. In that year a consolidation was effected with Chapel, Tuttle & Co., jobbers in undertakers supplies at Oneida, and the plant was removed to that village, business being conducted under the firm name of Chapel, Chase, Maxwell & Co. The growth and development of the business in Oneida is elsewhere noticed. When the National Casket Company was formed in 1890, Mr. Maxwell became a director and manager of the Oneida plant. He has never held public office, with the exception of one term as village trustee, but has been actively interested in many enterprises tending to promote the welfare of the village, especially the Oneida Savings, Building, and Loan Association which be organized and served as president seven years. Mr. Maxwell married in 1867, Frances A. Harris, daughter of Thomas Harris of his native town.

FROM:
Our County and it's people
A Descriptive and Biographical Record of
Madison County, New York
Edited by: John E. Smith
The Boston History Co., Publishers 1890


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