John Fraser, Sr.

 Nursery Businessman

Born:September 4, 1842, Childwalk, Lancashire, England
Died:August 26, 1920, Huntsville, Alabama
Buried:Maple Hill Cemetery, Huntsville, Alabama
Father of:James William Fraser
Father of:John Fraser, Jr.
Father of:Oliver W. Fraser


•  "The Huntsville Wholesale Nursery opened in 1872 by W. F. Heikes, Jessie J. Moss and John Fraser. At New Hope, Jim, Ed, George and Taylor Butler established J. E. Butler and Company, moving their business from Poplar Ridge. They later changed the company name to the present day Butler Brothers, in 1876." - Record

•  Article titled: Huntsville Wholesale Nursery (written in 1955)
     "Huntsville Wholesale Nursery Company is possibly the oldest business in Huntsville.
     An original grant from the United States Government for the first 720 acres was given on March 2, 1813.
     The business was incorporated in 1873 with John Fraser, W. F. Heikes, and Jessie S. Moss as owners. Mr. Fraser was nursery man; Mr. Heikes was sales man; and Mr. Moss was landowner.
     The founder John Fraser came from Edinburgh, Scotland to this country. He married a Scotch girl. He was known as one of the foremost horticulturists of his time.
     This was the first nursery in the State of Alabama. The company was well known for the application of scientific methods in the development of new plants, flowers, and trees. They conducted experiments with various types of fertilizers to get maximum results. The first 10 to 15 years were rough for the corporation.
     Success came with the development of the Javanese Pear Trees. Since that time the business has been growing steadily.
     The present officers are: John Fraser, Jr., President; John Fraser, III, Vice-president; and Margaret Fraser Sparkman, secretary.
     Mr. John Fraser, Jr. was National president of the American Association of Nurserymen for 1930-31.
     The company operates on very solid business principles. The present operations covers 1200 acres with the most modern equipment and facilities in irrigation, cold storage and warehousing.
     A complete line of nursery stock which enables buyers to cover all their requirements from one company.
     Our products are shipped to all points including The United States, parts of Canada, Mexico, and Cuba. Shipments have gone as far as Australia." - Sesquicentennial

•  There are links here for the sons of John Fraser, Sr. (James, John, Jr., and Oliver). He also had three daughters. Two were born in Missouri before moving to Alabama. They were: Annie Crockett Fraser (1872-1951) and Agnes Fraser (1874 - 1955) and one born in Gladstone, Madison County, AL. "The third daughter, Helen Jane (1876 - 1953), married Daniel Harrison, who with his brother, established Harrison Brothers Hardware, now located on the courthouse square." - HHR

•  Married Margaret "Maggie" Morrison Miur Sept 29, 1871 in St. Louis Missouri. Maggie was the daughter of William Miur (1823 -1902) and Ellen Bald (1823 -1918). She was born June 15, 1849 in Airth Parish, Stirlingshire, Scotland and died Oct. 28, 1934 in Miani Florida. -

•  Son of James Fraser (1813 - 1966) and Jane Crocket (1814 - 1861) -

•  Some of the US census records said he was born in Scotland. He clearly lived in Scotland before he came to the US and his wife was from Scotland. - Editor's Notes

Related Links:

• - Page owned by frankreed170 (Originally found at

•  Find A Grave - Page created by Heather

•  HHR - Articles by David Byers and a letter by Ollie Fraser tell the story of nurseries in Madison County published in the Huntsville Historical Review, Volume 31, #1, Winter-Spring 2006, Huntsville-Madison County Historical Society. Pages 7-34.

•  Record - A Dream Come True: The Story of Madison County and Incidentally of Alabama and the United States, Volume II, by James Record, 1978, page 23.

•  Sesquicentennial - Commemorative Album, Celebrating our City's Sesquicentennial of Progress, Huntsville, Alabama, by James E. Taylor, General Chairman, 1955, page 269.

The Following Pages Link to this Page:
•  HHR
•  James William Fraser
•  John Fraser, Jr.
•  Oliver W. Fraser
•  Record
•  Sesquicentennial