Transcribed from: The History of Florida: Past & Present, The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol.
III, page 186, 1923.
BOYNTON, WILLIAM JAMES of Havana is one of the prominent naval stores operators in Florida.
He is a thoroughly progressive business man, successful, and his success has been due to the
earnest and intelligent application of his own efforts since he left home when a youth.
Mr. BOYNTON was born on a farm near Princeton, Caldwell County, Kentucky, February 19, 1886.
His grandfather CAESAR A. BOYNTON was a railroad contractor, and built many miles of railroad
during the early days of Kentucky and Texas. GEORGE WILLIAM BOYNTON, father of WILLIAM J.,
was born in Georgia, also took up the contracting business, and while building a railroad in
Kentucky he married Miss MARY LOU McGOWAN a native of Caldwell County and member of a pioneer
family of that section. In 1880 GEORGE W. BOYNTON began farming and the growing of dark
tobacco, and he continued active until a few years ago and is now living retired at Princeton.
WILLIAM J. BOYNTON spent his early life on a Kentucky farm, had only the advantages of the
common schools, and at the age of eighteen was in Florida working at eighteen dollars a month
as clerk in the commissary store of a phosphate mine at Holder. He remained there four years,
from 1904 to 1908, and while there completed a business course at Jasper, Florida. His
experience in phosphate mining continued after that as time keeper and assistant superintendent
for the Dunnellon Phosphate Company at their mines at Hernando and the Dutton phosphate boat
Juliet in Marion County. In 1911 Mr. BOYNTON engaged his very modest capital in business as
a turpentine producer, and since then has greatly extended his interests in the naval stores
industry of Florida. At one time he conducted individual operations at English, Florida,
and was also associated as a member of the firm Boynton Brothers at Dunnellon. In November,
1914, Mr. BOYNTON removed to Gadsden County, and since then has continued individual operations
at Havana, while the Boynton Brothers firm are operating at Midway and these constitute the
largest operations in naval stores in the eastern part of Gadsden County. Mr. BOYNTON is
also a member of the Arrington & Miller corporation, general merchants at Havana, and operating
commissary stores at Jamieson, Florida, and Attapulgus, Georgia.
Mr. BOYNTON is a steward in the Methodist Episcopal Church. He assisted in all the bond
drives in the county during the World war. He is vice president of the Spanish Trail Highway
Association, and in Masonry is affiliated with the Lodge, Royal Arch Chapter, Knights Templar
Commandery, the Shrine and the Eastern Star. In November, 1915, in Havana he married Miss
SADIE MILLER, daughter of DANIEL WEBSTER MILLER. Her father is one of the very successful
tobacco planters of Gadsden County, where he was born and reared and has served as county
commissioner and a representative in the Legislature. Mr. and Mrs. BOYNTON have two children,
WILLIAM J., Jr., and SARAH L.