Harold Edward Cornell (1888-1943)
Glen St. Mary Nursery Company
Florida Citrus Trade Producers Association
Winter Haven Citrus Growers Association
Florida Citrus Commission
Harold Edward Cornell was born in Dubuque, Iowa in 1888. At the age of 25 he moved to Winter Haven, Florida. He acquired citrus groves and became involved in the nursery business. He soon became known as one of the best informed citrus men in the state. Continuing his work in the nursery business he became a General Manager of Glen St. Mary Nursery Company, serving first as vice president and then as president by 1930. Under Cornell’s leadership, the company became the largest of its kind in the world.
Cornell helped to found two organizations that became very important to the Florida citrus industry: the Florida Citrus Trade Producers Association and the Winter Haven Citrus Growers Association, which eventually operated as a part of Florida’s Natural Co-Op. Cornell was also instrumental in the formation of the Florida Citrus Commission.
In 1940 Cornell married Thelma Hollister, a daughter of peanut farmers, and together they continued his citrus groves. Tragically, Cornell died three years later. Thelma Cornell continued farming, becoming an important figure in the citrus industry in her own right.