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A History of Kentucky and Kentuckians. The Leaders and Representative Men in Commerce, Industry and Modern Activities. By E. Polk Johnson, Volume III, Illustrated. The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago-New York, 1912.
JOSEPH S. CLAYBROOKE. – Known as one of the representative business men of the younger generation, Mr. Claybrooke is one of the interested principals in the Robertson-Claybrooke Company, a leading mercantile concern of Washington county, with a well equipped establishment in the thriving little city of Springfield. The various departments of the establishment are stocked with select lines of goods and the store controls a large and appreciative patronage, drawing the same from the fine section of country normally tributary to Springfield. Mr. Claybrooke is a representative of one of the sterling pioneer families of Washington county and concerning the genealogy adequate record appears in the sketch of his brother, William D. Claybrooke, on other pages of this work.
Joseph S. Claybrooke was born near East Texas, Washington county, on the 11th of March, 1874, and in the graded schools of the village mentioned he secured his early educational discipline. Upon leaving school he located in Springfield where, in 1892, he entered the employ of the firm of McCord & Robertson as a clerk in their general store. He was thus engaged until 1897, when he became a member of the mercantile establishment of Grundy, Claybrooke & McIntire. This alliance continued until 1905, when he withdrew from the firm and removed to the city of Louisville, where he became one of the interested principals in the wholesale clothing concern of the Fall City Clothing Company, of which he is still a stockholder and with whose active management he was identified until 1907, when he returned to Springfield and effected the organization of the Robertson-Claybrooke Company, which is incorporated with a capital stock of twenty-five thousand dollars and which carries full lines of dry-goods, men’s and women’s clothing, shoes, hats, carpets, draperies, wall paper, notions, etc. Mr. Claybrooke is also associated with his brother, James R. Claybrooke, in the ownership of a fine farm of more than three hundred acres and the same is known as one of the best in Washington county. The brothers are unquestionably the best growers of Burley tobacco in this county and have shown great interest in the advancing of this line of industrial enterprise in this section of the state. Their success as tobacco growers has been excellent and each year they are devoting increased acreage to this product. They are also large and extensive dealers in mules, and probably handle as many as any other person in the county. Mr. Claybrooke was also a stock-holder in the Citizens’ Life Insurance Company, of Louisville, and is known as an alert, progressive and loyal citizen. He accords a staunch allegiance to the Democratic party and gives his active support to all measures tending to advance the general welfare of his home county. Both he and his wife are members of the Baptist church and he contributed liberally to the erection of the attractive new church edifice in Springfield. He is affiliated with Springfield Lodge, No. 50, Free & Accepted Masons, in Springfield.
On the 14th of February, 1894, Mr. Claybrooke was united in marriage to Miss Cora Vernon Smith, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth (Langford) Smith, of Bardstown, Nelson county, this state, where her father was president of the bank and a very prominent and influential citizen at the time of his death. Mr. and Mrs. Claybrooke have one daughter, Elizabeth Langford, who was born on the 31st of July, 1908.