Joseph F. Coan (1870-1933), a bachelor, was descended from a long line of North Guilford Coans who lived on Elm Street. Until his father (Jerome) died in 1899, Joseph assisted him in the operation of the family grocery store in North Guilford. It was during this period of young Joseph’s life, before the turn of the century, that he dabbled in photography for a small supplemental income. After his father’s death, Joseph sold the grocery business and became an electrician. He was employed in Waterbury, Connecticut by the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad Company until a few years before his death. While living in North Guilford, Joseph had a reputation for being musically gifted since he could play both the violin and piano, as well as compose music. He organized and led a small orchestra for local performances.