Abner Taylor

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Abner Taylor (January 19, 1829 - April 13, 1903) was a U.S. Representative from Illinois.

Born in Bangor, Maine, Taylor moved with his parents to Champaign County, Ohio in 1832, thence to Fort Dodge, Iowa, and subsequently to Chicago, Illinois in 1860. He served the Union the American Civil War as a general's deputy, and later a colonel and United States Treasury Agent. As a business man, Taylor engaged in extensive contracting, building, and mercantile pursuits, and participated in the construction of the Texas State Capitol. In exchange for the construction of the Texas State House, Taylor was awarded three million acres of land in northwest Texas in 1882. He served as a delegate to the 1884 Republican National Convention. Further, Taylor served as a member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1884 to 1886.

Taylor was elected as a Republican to the Fifty-first and Fifty-second Congresses (March 4, 1889-March 3, 1893). He married Clara Babcock, a daughter of business associate Colonel A C Babcock on September 9, 1889 in Cassopolis, Michigan. Clara was nearly thirty-two years his junior. The millionaire and his lively bride were well known in Congress. Clara made international news when she announced that rather than keeping Congressmen's signatures in an autograph book, she would have them embroidered onto a petticoat in silk to keep as a record of the 52nd Congress.

Taylor did not campaign in 1892, he instead resumed the building and contracting business. He died in Washington, D.C. in 1903, and was interred in Rock Creek Cemetery.

References[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Ransom W. Dunham
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 1st congressional district

1889-1893
Succeeded by
J. Frank Aldrich

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.