Friday, September 22, 2017

Edward K. Taylor (1860-1930): Alameda's first mayor; Banned spitting on the sidewalk

Edward "E.K." Taylor and the family plot
Plot 33, Lot 4

Edward "E.K." Taylor was born in Elmira on August 2, 1860. His father was the famous Bishop William Taylor, who organized the Methodist Episcopal Church in California. [Read his bio HERE]

Taylor grew up in Alameda where he attended the local schools before being admitted to the University of the Pacific. In 1885, he received his law degree from Hastings School of Law and was admitted to the California Bar on his birthday that same year.

In 1903, he was elected to the California State Senate where he served for four years. His major accomplishment was successfully promoting a constitutional  amendment which saved taxpayers about two percent interest on bonds. He also introduced legislation to protect both game and non-game live birds.

Taylor served as the City Attorney of Alameda from 1893-1907, where he worked to widen and pave streets, as well as beautify the city, acquiring Alameda Park along the way. He also successfully had Webster Street widened by over 30 feet. In 1907, he was elected to serve as mayor, where he successfully passed the first law in the country banning spitting on the sidewalks. Devoted to the welfare of children, he enlisted the help of Alameda's youngest citizens to promote the construction playgrounds on the island community.

Upon his death in 1930, the city of Alameda had his body lie in state at City Hall for four days before his burial in the Taylor family plot at Mountain View Cemetery.

No comments: