Joseph Brooker, painter for the Crystal City Glass Company, was born in Wisconsin in 1850, and is a son of Eleazar and Matilda (Hurst) Brooker, who were natives of Baden, Germany. The father was born about 1826, and immigrated to the United States when about eighteen years of age. He spent four years in Philadelphia, Penn., and then went to Iowa, where he resided one year. He next went to Wisconsin, where he married.
In 1859 he crossed the plains to California, and after a ninety days'
journey behind ox teams reached his destination, where he followed mining
for four years, and then returned to his family, in Wisconsin via the
Isthmus of Panama and New York. Since 1869 he has been a resident of
Jefferson County, Mo. In 1862 he enlisted in Company H, Twenty fifth
Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, and for three years was with Sherman in
his Atlanta and Georgia campaign. He was discharged at Madison, Wis.
Joseph Brooker received a good education in his youthful days, and
since the establishment of the Crystal City Plate Glass Company, has
served them in various capacities, and for a number of years has been
their chief painter and glazier. He is perhaps the only man who has
been with the company since its organization (formerly the American Plate Glass Company), and during that time he has not lost over thirty days. In 1873 he married Sarah, daughter of James and Sarah Richards, natives of Virginia and South Carolina, respectively. Mr. Richards moved to Jefferson County, Mo., in 1869 but died in Arkansas, in 1885. The mother died in 1865. Mrs. Brooker was born in Yazoo County, Miss. and she and Mr. Brooker are the parents of three living children: Mary Ellen, Joseph and Jessie. Mr. Brooker has a good and comfortable home and is a charter member of the A. L. of H., and he and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is a Republican, and his first presidential vote was cast for Garfield, in 1880.