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Search Results for: Keyword: 'la follette'

Term: Kohler, Walter Jodok 1875 - 1940

Definition:

industrialist, politician, governor, b. Sheboygan. He was the son of J. M. Kohler (q.v.). In 1890 he went to work in the enameling department of his father's farm-implement firm (established in 1873). On the death of his father (1900), Kohler and his two brothers, Carl and Robert, assumed management of the firm, and when Robert died in 1905, Walter Jodok Kohler became president, serving in this capacity from 1905 to 1937, and from 1937 until his death was chairman of the board of directors. After 1912 the firm was known as The Kohler Co. Under Walter J. Kohler's direction, the company grew to be one of the largest of its kind in the nation, and pioneered in the production of plumbing equipment and the manufacture of vitreous china and enamelware. Kohler also held important offices in other businesses; he was chairman of the board of the Vollrath Co. and an officer of the Security National Bank (Sheboygan). He was national vice-president and director of the National Association of Manufacturers, a director of the Wisconsin Manufacturers Association, a trustee of Lawrence College, and a regent of the Univ. of Wisconsin (1918-1924). Noted for conceiving and building Kohler Village near Sheboygan (begun in 1912) and planned as a model industrial community for his employees, Kohler was often the target for bitter criticism by progressives and labor groups because of his "paternalism" and vigorous opposition to trade unionism. In 1934 when his employees were attempting to organize under the A. F. of L., Kohler refused to bargain, and a strike occurred which brought nationwide notoriety because of its violence (2 killed, 47 wounded, July 27, 1934). A conservative Republican, Kohler was a delegate at large to the party's national convention in 1928, and in the same year received the Republican nomination for governor due to a split in the state progressive faction of the party. Although the Progressives, headed by Philip and Robert M. La Follette, Jr. (q.v.), attempted to challenge the nomination, claiming that Kohler had violated the state corrupt practices act, the state supreme court upheld the nomination; Kohler was elected in the November election, and served one term (Jan., 1929-Jan., 1931). Defeated for the Republican gubernatorial nomination by Philip La Follette in 1930, Kohler was successful in his bid for the nomination in 1932, but lost the general election to Democrat Albert Schmedeman (q.v.). Although talked of as a possible Republican presidential candidate in 1936, the continued labor difficulties at Kohler's plant virtually ended his career as a candidate for public office. Dict. Amer. Biog., Suppl. 2; Who Was Who in Amer. (1934); Wis. Blue Book (1929); Madison Wis. State Journal, Apr. 22, 1940; N.Y. Times, Apr. 22, 1940.

The Wisconsin Historical Society has manuscripts related to this topic. See the catalog description of the Walter Jodok Kohler Papers for details.

View a related article at Wisconsin Magazine of History Archives.

View newspaper clippings at Wisconsin Local History and Biography Articles.

[Source: Blue book]

92 records found

Armstrong Creek, Town of, Forest Co.
Babcock, Joseph Weeks 1850 - 1909
Baensch, Emil 1857 - 1939
Baker, Ray Stannard [David Grayson] 1870 - 1946
Bancroft, Levi Horace 1861 - 1948
Barton, Albert Olaus 1870 - 1947
Beck, Joseph David 1866 - 1936
Berceau, Terese 1950
Blaine, John James 1873 - 1934
Bolens, Harry Wilbur 1864 - 1944
Bosshard, Otto 1876 - 1943
Brown [Willis], Olympia 1835 - 1926
Bryant, George Edwin 1832 - 1907
Capitol fire (1904)
Carpenter, Tim
Chvala, Chuck 1954
Chynoweth, Herbert William 1848 - 1906
Commons, John Rogers 1862 - 1945
Connor, William Duncan 1864 - 1944
conservation movement
Cook, Samuel Andrew 1849 - 1918
Crownhart, Charles Henry 1863 - 1930
Damann, Theodore 1869 - 1946
Davidson, James O. 1854 - 1922
Duff, Marc C. 1961
Ekern, Herman Lewis 1872 - 1954
Frank, Glenn 1887 - 1940
Frear, James Archibald 1861 - 1939
Gale, Zona 1874 - 1938
Ganfield, William Arthur 1873 - 1940
Gelatt, Roland Bernard 1856 - 1917
governors
Haight, Theron Wilber 1840 - 1913
Handley, John Joseph 1876 - 1941
Hannan, John Joseph 1866 - 1946
Hatton, William H. 1856 - 1937
Haugen, Nils Pederson 1849 - 1931
Heil, Julius Peter 1876 - 1949
Hoard, William Dempster 1836 - 1918
Holmes, Frederick Lionel 1883 - 1946
Hough, Maxine 1961
Houser, Walter L. 1855 - 1928
Huber, Henry Allen 1869 - 1933
Hull, Merlin 1870 - 1953
James, Ada Lois 1876 - 1952
Kading, Charles August 1874 - 1956
Kohler, Walter Jodok 1875 - 1940
Kronshage, Theodore Jr. 1869 - 1934
Krumrey, Henry 1852 - 1922
La Follette, Belle Case, 1859-1931
La Follette, Bronson C. 1936
La Follette, Douglas J.
La Follette, Philip Fox, 1897-1965
La Follette, Robert Marion Sr. (1855-1925)(Histori
La Follette, Robert Marion Sr. 1855 - 1925
La Follette, Robert Marion, Jr., 1895 - 1953
La Follette, Town of, Burnett Co.
La Follette, Town of, Forest Co.
Lafollette
Lassa, Julie M. 1970
Lenroot, Irvine Luther 1869 - 1949
Levitan, Solomon 1862 - 1940
Mccarthy, Charles 1873 - 1921
Mcgovern, Francis Edward 1866 - 1946
Myrick, Harry Pierce 1857 - 1916
Odell, Emery Alvin 1871 - 1953
Olbrich, Michael Balthasar 1881 - 1929
Payne, Henry Clay 1843 - 1904
Pettis, Mark L. 1950
Pfister, Charles [Frederick] 1859 - 1927
Philipp, Emanuel Lorenz 1861 - 1925
primary elections in Wisconsin
Progressive Movement
Sawyer, Philetus 1816 - 1900
Schilling, Robert 1843 - 1922
Schmedeman, Albert George 1864 - 1946
Scofield, Edward 1842 - 1925
Siebecker, Robert George 1854 - 1922
Sinicki, Christine 1960
Skindrud, Richard A. 1944
Spooner, John Coit 1843 - 1919
Stephenson, Isaac 1829 - 1918
Stevens, Edmond Ray 1869 - 1930
Teasdale, Howard (1855 - 1936)
timeline of Wisconsin history, 1900 -1999
Tittemore, James Nelson 1864 - 1949
Travis, David M. 1948
Von Cotzhausen, Frederick William 1838 - 1924
Whitehead, John Meek 1852 - 1924
Wilcox, Roy Porter 1873 - 1946
Wilder, Amos Parker 1862 - 1936
Youmans, Theodora Winton, 1863 - 1932

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