JAMES KERR, the subject of our sketch, was born in Chatham, near Detroit, Mich., March 20th, 1858, and was educated
in Toronto, Canada. He entered the drug business in 1873, and was graduated from the Ontario College of Pharmacy
as a pharmaceutical chemist in 1878. When less than twenty years of age he opened a drug store in Toronto, but
immature business qualifications precipitated by a general depression in business concluded this venture. A little
disfigured by this encounter, but not divested of his monumental pluck and nerve, he turned his footsteps toward
the Empire state and the only New York city. After clerking for a time in Brooklyn he finally was induced by Mr.
L. Johnson (the originator and proprietor of the now famous Johnson's Happy Pills) to accept a position in his
pharmacy at West New Brighton. After satisfying Mr. Johnson of his business tact and energy he was admitted as
a partner, and this relation was maintained to the satisfaction of both parties for five years, only ending with
Mr. Johnson's retirement from the business, on a comfortable competence. Since Mr. Kerr's residence on Staten Island
he has been the recipient of many favors from his fellow townsmen, who know how to appreciate an active, energetic
businessman, and all who have been associated with him. He has served seven years as an active member of Medora
Hook & Ladder Co., No 3, filling all the offices and serving as foreman for three years.
Mr. Kerr is an Odd Fellow, a director in the Staten Island Building Loan and Savings Association, trustee of Richmond
Lodge, No. 66, F. & A. M., high priest of Tyrian Chapter, 219, Royal Arch Masons, and last but not least, was
chosen at the last charter election to represent the fourth ward of the village on West Brighton, as its alderman.
In conclusion, it would not be out of place to state that we confidently believe that the extraordinary efforts
put forward by Mr. Kerr to increase his already large business will be crowned with success.
Prominent Men of Staten Island 1893
A. Y. Hubbell, Publishers
New York, 1893.
Richmond County, NY
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