Remembering J. Baxter Kremer, Louisville Water’s longest serving employee

Louisville Water’s longest serving employee, J. Baxter Kremer, worked for the utility for nearly 60 years. His first day on the job was May 8, 1857.

For the first 34 years of his career, he worked as chief assessor before managing the commercial department in 1941.  When all the services were metered, he served in this position shortly before his death in 1954.

Known for his good memory, he earned the nickname the “Water Firm’s ‘Walking Encyclopedia.”

As chief assessor, before meters were in use, he oversaw the assessors, whose job it was to go “into every home to check on the number of rooms, the fixtures, faucets, etc. If the patron owned a cow or horse, there was an extra charge for water.”

As told through a 1949 archived article, we get a small peek into Kremer’s personality. He was known to come into the office on Sundays to map out his work for the week; he was a Louisville Colonels (baseball) fan and often went to their games, or listened to the broadcasts; and he only missed one board meeting and that was in 1952 after his wife died.

His philosophy as stated in the article, “’Early to bed and early to rise and you meet no prominent people.’”