Renaker

Charles Taylor

Birthdate:

21 May 1884

Birthplace:

Cynthiana, Kentucky

Date of Death:

Place of Death:

Occupation:

Undertaker

Properties Owned:

Charles Taylor Renaker was born on May 21, 1884, in Cynthiana,  Kentucky to John James and Sarah Elizabeth (Stewart) Renaker.  He was  three years old when he came to Monrovia on September 15, 1887.  He  lived in Monrovia all his life except for 1892-1894 when he lived on a  ranch in Duarte that his family owned.  


Renaker’s grandfather, John  Harrison Renaker, had been a well-to-do farmer in Harrison County,  Kentucky, and was able to well-educate his four children [the 1860  Federal Census shows John H. Renaker with real estate valued $10, 000  and a personal estate of $3,300 amount of money for those days in rural  Kentucky].


Renaker, who went by his middle name of “Taylor”,  attended Throop Polytechnic Institute and then joined his father in the  funeral parlor and furniture business, running it with his younger  brother Leslie after his father died in 1903. The family business was  originally located at the southeast corner of Colorado and Myrtle (the  Badeau Block) and then at 627 S. Myrtle.


Taylor's father died in  1903 (Davis 197), and around that same time, the funeral parlor burned  down.   Taylor Renaker constructed a new building, located at the  northeast corner of South Myrtle and East Lime, the address being listed  over the years as 101 E. Lime, 103 1/2 E. Lime (likely Mrs. J.J.  Renaker's address as she lived upstairs over the mortuary), 107 E. Lime,  and 109 E. Lime because of new structures being built.  By the 1930's,  the address for the mortuary is 334 S. Myrtle and Lot 15 still has that  address today  Though Mrs. Renaker continued to live above the mortuary,  Taylor Renaker moved out when he married.


Taylor Renaker  married the widow of A.P. Seymour, Emily, around 1913 or 1914. The  Seymours, along with their son, had come to Monrovia around 1905, and  Mr. Seymour had acquired several pieces of property as well as  establishing the Monrovia Publishing Company.  He built the house at 205  E. Hillcrest around 1907. Taylor and Emily lived in this house until  around 1925 when they moved to another house at 555 Norumbega.


C.T.  Renaker was extremely active in community activities. He was elected  the first Exalted Ruler of the BPOE in 1921, he was on the Board of  Trustees of the Baptist Church, he was a mason and a member of the  Kiwanis Club.  In 1936, the year before he died, he was the general  chairman for the Monrovia Day on its 50th anniversary. According to the  book History of Monrovia (Davis 197), Taylor Renaker was a staunch  promoter of Monrovia, which accounts for his membership in so many civic  organizations.

Taylor Renaker's mother died in 1936, and he died  on July 23, 1937. Charles Taylor Renaker, his wife, mother, and his  father are all buried in the Live Oak Cemetery in Monrovia.  Taylor and  Emily had no children together.

Sources:

  1. Baker, Stephen.  Monrovia City Historian

  2. Davis, Charles F. ed.  Monrovia History.  Monrovia, California, 1957.

  3. Wiley, John L.  History of Monrovia.  Press of Pasadena Star-News, 1927.

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