John Francis Williams
City of Troy

This biography is from Troy and Rensselaer County, New York, Volume III, by Rutherford Hayner, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., New York and Chicago, 1925. It was submitted by Debby Masterson.

JOHN FRANCIS WILLIAMS—In one of the most practical lines of business endeavor, Mr. Williams has long been active in the city of Troy, New York, and is now the owner and manager of the interest of which his father was founder. Mr. Williams is the son of James R. and Margaret E. (Smith) Williams, both now deceased. They were the parents of five children: John Francis, of further mention; Daisy M., deceased; George Henry, who takes care of the farm; Mary Irving, and Grace Elizabeth. James R. Williams, father of John Francis, was one of the early transfer men of Troy. He started his business about 1860 in a small way, with one team of horses and a wagon. He carried on the business for many years alone, then, when his sons came to an age where they could be of use to him, he received them into the firm, and the name of J. R. Williams & Sons became one of the most familiar in the teaming and trucking business in this city. Since the death of the father the business has been conducted by the sons, John F. and George H. Williams.

John Francis Williams was born in Troy, New York, July 7, 1885. His education was begun in the public schools of the city, and he later attended the district school of the town of North Greenbush, and finished at the Troy Business College. From boyhood interested in the work in which his father was engaged, he entered the business upon completing his course at business college and was active for several years in that connection. Later, for a short time, he was in the employ of the New York Central railroad as foreman, then returned to the interest of which his father was the head and with which he has been continuouslyconnected since. From the early beginnings, when only horse-drawn vehicles were used, through the advent of the automobile and its early developments to the time when it became the permanent vehicle of commerce, Mr. Williams has kept pace with the march of progress, holding a position among the leaders in his field of activity. He does all kinds of transfer business and local and long distance trucking, and has also for years done a prosperous business in the distribution of ice.

Mr. Williams has been active more or less in the public service, and has served one term as supervisor from North Greenbush, this term expiring January 1, 1922. In November, 1921, Mr. Williams was elected sheriff of Rensselaer County for a term of three years, and took up the duties of office on January 1, 1922. He has taken up the work of this responsible position with large ability and characteristic energy, and the people feel that it is in good hands. Mr. Williams is a member of King Solomon Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons, and the Masonic Club. His chief recreation is driving horses. He is a great lover and admirer of horses and has a stable of unusually fine stock. For a number of years, on the Burden Farm, where the family has resided for nearly thirty years, the brothers have conducted a dairy business, and are breeders of Holstein cattle, carrying about fifty head, which is considered one of the best herds in the county. Mr. Williams is affiliated with the Republican party; and his religious affiliation is as a member of St. Luke's Catholic Church.

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