John C. Taliaferro III, pump company official

November 15, 2008|By Frederick N. Rasmussen

John C. Taliaferro III, a retired vice president of sales and international operations at an upstate New York pump manufacturer, died Nov. 7 of pneumonia at Union Memorial Hospital. He was 91.

Mr. Taliaferro was born in Baltimore and raised in Bolton Hill. He was a 1935 graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, N.H., and earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Harvard College in 1939.

When he was growing up in Bolton Hill, one of his childhood acquaintances was Thomas Garrison Morfit III, who later earned fame as Garry Moore on radio and TV, and as host of the TV game show I've Got A Secret.

FOR THE RECORD - An obituary for John C. Taliaferro III published in Saturday's editions incorrectly stated the last name of his daughter. He is survived by Sarah T. Hutson of Edmond, Okla.
The Baltimore Sun regrets the error.

"He tied Dad up to a lamppost, which made him late for dinner," said a son, Peter W. Taliaferro of Baltimore. "Years later, my brother, John, in attempting to get on his show, used this as his secret. [Mr. Moore] never even bothered writing back."

Mr. Taliaferro was supervisor of a Cleveland ammunition plant before World War II. After the war began, he enlisted in the Marine Corps and served as an ordnance officer. He fought at the battles of Saipan and Okinawa and landed in China.

Discharged in 1945 with the rank of captain, Mr. Taliaferro returned to Baltimore and joined the old Maryland Car Wheel Co. on Curtis Avenue in Curtis Bay as foundry supervisor. After its closure in 1948, he went to work at Ellicott Machine Corp., where he became sales manager.

In 1960, he left the area for a job at Morris Pumps Inc. in Skaneateles, N.Y., as vice president of sales and international operations.

After retiring in 1979, he moved to Marion, Mass., and since 1998 had been a resident of Roland Park Place.

He was a volunteer tutor with the Center for Adult Literacy and Learning.

Mr. Taliaferro was a lifelong lacrosse fan and enjoyed traveling, golfing, skiing, fishing and sailing.

"He also enjoyed reading about military history and explorations," his son said.

Mr. Taliaferro was a member of the Elkridge and L'Hirondelle clubs.

Services are private.

Also surviving are his wife of 65 years, the former Audrey Wilson; another son, John C. Taliaferro IV of Austin, Texas; a daughter, Sarah T. Hunter of Edmond, Okla.; a sister, Anne T. Smith of Concord, Mass.; and five grandchildren.

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