Discover your family's story.
Enter a grandparent's name to get started.
William A. Cornell, secretary and manager of the Geneva Brewing Company, appears to be one of those fortunate individuals, the right man in the right place, if we may judge by the results he has achieved in the industry with which he has been connected for a number of years. He has inherited, and understands how to make the best use of, the admirable traits which have descended to him from his English and Scotch ancestry, and to these he has added the best that is to be found in our own country. Both his grandfather and father were brewers and it seemed but natural that he should adopt the same calling. He has made a thorough study of the art, practically and scientifically, in Canada, the United States and in Australia, and is considered by competent judges a master in it.
William A. Cornell was born in Toronto, Canada, December 25, 1864. His school education was a sound and practical one, fitted to the line of work he intended to follow in later life. He was an apt student when he applied himself to learning the art of brewing, and mastered the details with such celerity that at the age of seventeen years he was made the manager of a brewery in Canada; he has been connected with this industry without intermission since that time. He has traveled all over Canada and the United States, examining the different methods in use in the various cities and establishments, and has adopted the best details of each plant he has visited. He finally located in Ogdensburg, New York, and in 1909 associated himself with a Geneva Brewing Company, of Geneva, New York, incorporated with a capital of fifty thousand dollars. The officers of the company are: A. M. Curtiss, president; Coleman Curtiss, vice-president; Charles G. Curtiss, treasurer; and William A. Cornell, secretary and manager. Mr. Cornell personally supervises all the brewing which is done by this corporation, and this is an enormous quantity. The water used is drawn from Seneca Lake through their own pipe line, and it is purified on the premises, the plant having its own purifying apparatus. This water is used also for the purpose of cleaning the bottles, kegs, etc., in use by the company, thus making an absolutely sanitary and healthful product. The company has its own malting houses in Buffalo, New York, known as the Curtiss Malting Company, of Buffalo. The machinery and all the apparatus used in the brewery are of the most modern and improved design and the brewery has a daily refrigerating capacity of thirty tons. The plant may be considered as up-to-date in every particular, and the officers are constantly observant of every new invention in connection with their line of business and give it a fair and impartial trial; if it then proves practical it is immediately installed. The entire plant covers an area of three acres of land and every department is managed in the most systematic. manner.
Mr. Cornell has little time at his disposal to devote to political matters, but he takes a reasonable interest in whatever concerns the welfare of his town and country and gives his support to the Democratic party. His religious affiliations are with the Episcopal church, and he is a member of the Masonic fraternity, the Kanadasaga Club, the Country Club of Geneva, and the Century Club of Ogdensburg, New York. He married, in Brockville, Canada, February 11, 1903, Ada L. Brown, of Ogdensburg, New York, daughter of DeWitt Clinton Brown, of that city, one of the first managers of the Rome, Watertown & Ogdensburg Railroad, which ran out of Ogdensburg, and a railroad manager all his life.