AS RECORDED IN:
COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD OF
TOLLAND AND WINDHAM COUNTIES CONNECTICUT.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF PROMINENT AND
REPRESENTATIVE CITIZENS AND OF MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLED FAMILIES
PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903 P. 355
KINGSBURY TAFT, who was in his lifetime one of the most respected and useful
members of the community of Stafford Springs, Tolland Co., Conn., was born in
Webster, Mass., Jan. 7, 1834, and died Jan. 6, 1898, in Stafford Springs.
Taft, the father of Ephraim K., was born in Uxbridge, Mass., Dec. 27, 1801, and
died in Willington, Conn., March 7, 1863, having been in the employ of the
Willington Glass factory for a number of years.
Personally he was a man of quiet and unassuming habits and was much
respected for his sterling worth and character.
In early life he was a Whig, but became a Republican on the formation of
that party. In religion he was a
pronounced Methodist, and his good life cast no shame or discredit upon his
faith. Evander Taft was married Feb.
14, 1827, to Lydia Kingsbury, who was born in Uxbridge, Mass., June 9, 1809, and
died Aug. 16, 1867, in Stafford. To
them were born the following children: Joanna,
born April 26, 1830, who died July 1, 1867, unmarried; Ephraim K.; Evander, born
July 6, 1836, in Webster, Mass., a plumber in Norwich, who married first, Sarah
Corbin, of Willington, and second, Jennie Brigham, of Norwich; Ellen M., born
July 14, 1846, who married Rev. S.O. Benton, and is living in New York city.
K. Taft was born in Webster, Mass., and attended school at Willington, to which
point his parents removed when he was quite young, and at Wilbraham Academy,
which institution he left when he was about eighteen years old, to take a
clerkship for William A. Foster, in his store on Stafford street.
In his later youth he also clerked for Lyman W. Crane and Francis A
Harwood. In 1865 he purchased an
interest in the dry goods store of James Medbery, the two doing business under
the firm name of Medbery & Taft, and continuing together for some two years.
At the end of that time Mr. Taft retired from the partnership and started
in business alone as a druggist, following this line until his death, and making
a great success of the enterprise. Much
of his knowledge of the drug business came from the instruction of his
brother-in-law, Dr. Albert Field, a practicing physician, but he studied and
experimented for himself, and his mastery of the drugs he sold came largely from
his indefatigable energy and determination to know what he was doing.
Taft was a charter member of Winter Post, No. 42, G.A.R., of which he was
chaplain at the time of his death. His
military experience was gained with Co. D, 25th C.V.I., in which he
enlisted Aug. 27, 1862, and was first sergeant.
After making a gallant and creditable record, he was wounded at Irish
Bend, La., April 14, 1863, and the effects of this wound necessitated his
discharge, Aug. 26, of the same year. Mr.
Taft was a very active and devoted member of the Methodist Church, of which he
was steward and Sunday-school superintendent for many years.
In his political relations he belonged to the Republican party but was
not an office seeker in any sense of the word.
Taft was married April 27, 1866, to Frances Augusta Field, a daughter of Abizer
and Asenath (Every) Field, of Hamden, N.Y. To
this union were born: (1) Mary
Field, born April 25, 1867, who on Aug. 15, 1892, married Francis Asbury Bagnall,
superintendent of the city schools of Adams, Mass., and who has three children,
Katherine, Frances and Margaret; (2)
Ernest Kingsbury, born Jan. 4, 1870, who graduated from the local high school,
in 1893 completed the course of the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, and is
now in charge of the store at Stafford. Mrs.
Taft is also a licensed pharmacist.
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