FL-GenWeb Digital Library and Archives
ARCHER, Westley Percival
Transcribed from: The History of Florida: Past & Present, The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol
Presented by Nancy Rayburn
II, page 304, 1923.
ARCHER, WESTLEY PERCIVAL. In a practical experience covering many years in every department
of the industry Mr. ARCHER is a recognized expert in everything pertaining to the manufacture
of cigar boxes, one of the important industries of Florida. Mr. ARCHER for a number of years
has been superintendent of one of the largest box factories at Key West.
He was born at Seminole, Florida, January 4, 1879, son of WILLIAM A. and HATTIE (BROWN) ARCHER.
His parents are living at Saint Petersburg. Mr. ARCHER’s grandparents, AUGUST and CAROLINE
(SAWYER) ARCHER, were early settlers of Key West. The SAWYERs were an old family from the
Bahama Islands. HATTIE BROWN was born in North Carolina. WILLIAM A. ARCHER learned the trade
of carpenter, was a truck farmer, and for a number of years has been engaged in the merchandise
business at Saint Petersburg.
WESTLEY PERCIVAL ARCHER attended public schools of Seminole, and his working experience began
at the age of fourteen. For several years he was employed in the orange and fruit growing
enterprise of the state. At the age of twenty he began making cigar boxes at Tampa, being an
employee of the Tampa Box Company about six months, was then with the A. A. Wood Box Company
and its successor, the Wood & Thompson Box Company, of Tampa. He remained with this concern
six years as superintendent of the plant and part of the time as a partner in the business.
When financial difficulties overtook the firm Mr. ARCHER removed to the West Coast and for
about a year engaged in the fishing business . His next location was at Charleston, South
Carolina, where he was in the Cedar Shook Department for the Sneidenberg Branch of the Havana
American Cigar Company. Remaining there eleven months, he returned to Tampa and became
superintendent of the plant in which he had formerly been interested and which was now being
operated by two trustees, GRIFFIN and GILLETT. After about a year this plant was sold, and
Mr. ARCHER remained as its manager for three weeks. Then followed another semi-vacation of
about a year in the fishing industry on the West Coast.
After his return to Tampa Mr. ARCHER was mill foreman in the Anderson Cedar Mill a year, then
became factory superintendent of the Sheip Weidman Box Company of Tampa, and six months later,
in 1911, came to Key West, where for eleven years he has been superintendent and general
manager of the Key West Box Company. He took up these duties at the direct request of the
owner of the business, Mr. NORBERG THOMPSON.
Mr. ARCHER married at Tampa Miss MAUD CREWS. They have six children, MILDRED, GLYN, PHILLIP,
KENNETH, LOIS and HELEN. Mr. ARCHER is affiliated with the Knights of Pythias, Benevolent
and Protective Order of Elks, Modern Woodmen of the World.
This page created August 22, 2010
© 2016 Fran Smith