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The Life of Joe Taylor (1874-1943)

The Joe Taylor exhibition in the Conwy Culture Centre

Who was Joe Taylor?

Joe Taylor, born in Maryland, USA on January 26th 1874, lived in Llandudno for 40 years and raised 5 daughters here. Joe’s parents are believed to have been enslaved, Joe had been born in the Prince George County, which had only been free of slavery 9 years before Joe was born.

It is though that Joe settled in Llandudno in 1898 as an instructor of boxing at the Victorian Gymnasium on Back Madoc Street. Between 1898 and 1904, he organised a number of boxing ‘entertainments’ in Llandudno.

In 1906, Joe became involved with training the local football team, the Llandudno Celts. The Celts team were quit young and Joe became a father figure to them. He developed his own training routine that proved successful, leading to Joe becoming the vice-chair of the club (highly unusual for the time because of Joe being a black man). Alongside this Joe worked at the local Dunphy’s warehouse.

We told the story of Joe Taylor to local school children from Ysgol Aberconwy, who then went on to show us their interpretations with art. Creating artwork that is unique from piece to piece. This exhibition shows how everyone’s minds come up with different images from the same story, and how imagination can run wild. You can visit this exhibition in the Conwy Culture Centre during February 2024.

Learn more about Joe’s life here.