Carrie Westlake Whitney.

Kansas City, Missouri; its history and its people 1808-1908 (Volume 2) online

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Charles E. Waldron, one of the well known grain merchants of Kansas
City, being the proprietor of the Waldron Grain Company, was born in St.
Louis, Missouri, May 6, 1876. His parents were, Charles E. and Anna
(Lowe) Waldron, who are mentioned on another page of this volume. He
acquired his education in the, public schools of St. Louis and Kansas City,
being but fourteen years of age at the time of his arrival here.

In 1894 Mr. Waldron Ijegan his business career in the humble capacity
of office boy in the establishment of Hall & Robinson, grain dealers, and
has ever since been connected with this line of activity. As he demonstrated
his capability and faithfulness in the discharge of the duties assigned him,
he won successive promotions until he became- confidential office man. In
1903 the firm of Hall & Robinson, which was located in the present Board
of Trade, building, was succeeded by the Hall Baker Grain Company, Mr.
Waldron remaining with the latter concern until May, 1907, when he se-
cured a seat on the Board of Trade, and on the 1st of June, 1907, started
out in business on his own account as senior partner in the firm of Waldron
& Evans, which was succeeded by the Waldron Grain Company, now one of
the active concerns on the Board of Trade. Mr. Waldron is a young man
of enterprise and progressive spirit and well merits the success which has
crowned his efforts, displaying sound judgment and excellent executive abil-
ity in the management of his business affairs. He has served as vice, presi-
dent of the Pacific Elevator Company since its inception in June, 1903, and
is recognized as a prominent factor in the grain circles of the city.

On the 21st of Octobe.r, 1903, Mr. Waldron was united in marriage to
Miss Amanda Caroline Bacon, of Kansas City, a daughter of Judge Langs-
ton Bacon, and unto them have been born two children, Amanda Caroline
and Martha Elizabeth. Our subject is independent in politics, voting for


the men whom he believe^ best qualified for office without regard to party
ties. He is a member of the Travelers Protective Aijsociatiou, and his re-
ligious faith is indicated by his identification with Grace Episcopal church.


The qualities of manhood which William Lawson Bartlett displayed
during an active life were such as commended him to the confidence and
trust of all with whom he was associated. His life record covered about
forty-one years, and though he was called hence in the midst of an active
and useful career he left to his family the priceless heritage of an un-
tarnished name and a memory that will ever be cherished.

He was born in Natchez, Mississippi, November 8, 1864, a son of a
noted divine, the Rev. Dr. William F. V. Bartlett of the First Presbyterian
church of Lexington, Kentucky. The father was born in Portland, Maine,
and was a graduate of Yale College. Removing to the south at the outbreak
of the Civil war, he joined the Confederate army as a chaplain and follow-
ing the close of hostilities engaged in teaching school in Natchez, Missis-
sippi. While there he formed the acquaintance of the lady who afterward
became his wife and who was at that time one of his pupils. Following
his marriage he entered the Presbyterian ministry and was called to the
pastorate of a church at Natchez. Later he removed to Lexington, where he
"was pastor of the First Presbyterian church for over thirty years and be-
came recognized as one of the strongest and ablest representatives of the
Presbyterian clergy. Yale College conferred upon him the degree of Doctor
of Divinity and he was widely recognized as a man of broad and scholarly
attainments, who in his labors was not denied the full harvest nor the after-
math. In his death, which occurred in Lexington in 1894, the church lost
one of its most gifted representatives, his city was one of its most honored res-
idents. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Mary Moore, was a repre-
sentative of a prominent old southern family and died in Lexington ])rior
to her husband's demise. They were the parents of William L., of this re-
view; Fred, deceased; Jane, who is living in Peoria, Illinois; Morris, of
Lawrenceburg, Kentucky; George, whose home is in Pittsburg, Pennsyl-
vania; and Paul, of Chicago.

William L. Bartlett pursued his education in Natchez and in Lexing-
ton, Kentucky, being a graduate of the State College of the latter city. He
was married there, on the 17th of September, 1889, to Miss Lottie Nichols,
of Lexington, a daughter of Nelson A. Nichols, now a real-estate dealer of
Kansas City.

Following his marriage Mr. Bartlett engaged in the coal and feed bus-
iness for seven years and then removed to Rolling Fork. Mississippi, where
he had the general management of the business of the D. L. Moore Lumber
Company, the largest enterprise of this character in the south. He con-
tinued with that house for oiubt rears or until the time of his death, which


occurred March 13, 1905, his remains being interred in the Elmwood cem-
etery of Kansas City. He was a man of many excellent and exemplary
traits of character. He held membership with the Masons and the Knights
of Pythias and gave his political allegiance to the democracy. Moreover
he was a man of high principles, w^hose life was in conformity with Christian
teachings and with his professions as a member of the Presbyterian church.
All who knew him esteemed him for his many sterling traits of character and
his death was the occasion of the deepest regret to many friends as well as
his immediate family.

Mr. and Mrs. Bartlett were the parents of two sons. Nelson Vincent,
born in Lexington, April 13, 1891, was educated in the public schools of
Mississippi and in the Central Business College at Kansas City. He is now
in charge of the stationery department of the store of Evans & Smith, dealers
in drugs, sundries and stationery in Kansas City; William Lawson, born in
Lexington, Kentucky, October 13, 1901, is yet under the, parental roof.
Like her husband, Mrs. Bartlett is a Presbyterian in religious faith, her
membership being now with the Central Presbyterian church of Kansas
City, in which she takes a most active and helpful part. Following her hus-
band's demise she returned to Kansas City with her two sons and erected
*;'■ here a pleasant home at No. 2603 Garfield street.


Charles E. Heite, vice president of the AV. L. Rock Flower Company,
was born in Shelbyville, Illinois, in 1869, a son of E. T. and Martha (Ray)
Heite, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Indiana. In
the year 1880 the father brought his family to Kansas City, locating at
Thirty-second and Charlotte streets, w^here he established a florist business,
there continuing until 1898, when he removed to the country, where he is
still engaged in business in the same line.

Charles E. Heite was a youth of eleven years when the family removed
from Illinois to this city, and in the public schools here he largely acquired
his education. In his youth he assisted his father in the greenhouse and
has always continued in this line of business. In 1892 he became a partner
of his father and so continued until 1900, when he joined Mr. Rock at their
present location in the organization of the W. L. Rock Flower Company, of
which Mr. Rock is president, Mr. Heite vice president, and A. M. Clarke
secretary. They conduct one of the largest business enterprises of the kind
in the w^est, having one hundred thousand feet under glass. Here they
raise the finest roses, carnations, chrysanthemums and other flowers and
also have fifteen acres outside in flowers. They employ twenty-five men in
all and sell to the retail trade in a downtown store, having a fine business
not only in cut flowers but also in potted plants. They do floral decorative
work for weddings and receptions and make all kinds of floral designs. From
the beginning their business has steadily increased, Mr. Heite's broad prac-


tical experience contributing in substantial measure to the success of the

In 1902 Mr. Heite was married in Kansas City to Miss Annie Mevers, a
native of Chicago, and a daughter of J. F. ]\Ieyers. They have one child,
Charles E. Mr. Heite belongs to the Kansas City Casting Club, an associa-
tion which indicates his favorite recreation. He is a man of good business
ability, keen discernment and executive force and in controlling and en-
larging his business he has wrought along modern business lines, at all
times conforming his methods to a high standard of commercial ethics.


J. H. Lipscomb, a former member of the Kansas City City bar, who is
now devoting his time and energies to the real-estate business, in which con-
nection he has secured a good clientage, is one of Jackson county's native

His father, Joel Lipscomb, came to this county in 1837, before Kansas
City had an existence and when the entire countryside was an almost barren
district. The little village stood near the river but for miles around stretched
uncultivated acres still belonging to the government. He was born in Madi-
son county, Kentucky, October 21, 1813, and arrived in this county in 1839.
His life had much of good in it for the early settlers and proved an element
in the upbuilding of Westport and subsequently of Kansas City. Mr. Lips-
comb filed a claim to one hundred and sixty acres of land seven miles south
of Kansas City. On the 1st of September, 1840, he married Miss Henrietta
Simpson Harris, a daughter of John and Henrietta (Simpson) Harris, her
father being one of the early settlers of this district, while his quarter section
of land is now the site of Hyde Park. The wedding ceremony of the young
couple took place in a log house which was the home of John Harris and
was situated about one hundred and fifty yards north and a little east of the
present Westport high school building.

Following his marriage Joel Lipscomb rctunicd to Kentucky, where ha
reni;iiiic(l I'oi- a year l)ut his ciithusiasni for the west had l)een aroused and
he returned and shortly afterward entered one lunidrcd and sixty acres of
land about eight n)iles south of this city, whei'c he erected his home and reared
his family, there spending his entire life exc('])t during the period of tlie Civil
war, when lie wa- in th3 -outh. Mr. Li|i.-ci):iib died ui)on liis farm which
he chose as a ]»la('e (»f residence in his early manhood, his death occurring
December 27. 1893. Lnto liim and his wife were born in\ cliildren, three
of whom died in infaiu-v. 'I'he two eldest sons, William and Nathan, entered
the southern army when tlcv were respectively eigliteen and nineteen years
of age. William was killed in the battle of \^icksburg and Nathan survived
to the end of that nnfoi-funatc conflict and I'ctnrned to Jackson comity, Mis-
souri, where he built his home, as did h's fathci- hd'oiv him, and became one
of the most respected farmers in the county. Since the death of .Toel Lipscomb


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his heirs have sold the old homestead to P. D. Ridenour, of Kansas City, who
now owns it, but from pioneer times to the present the name of Lij)SComb
has figured in the records of Jackson county, synonymous with progressive
citizenship and with business enterprise and integrity.

J. H. Lipscomb acquired a public-school education and began preparation
for the legal profession as a law student in the office and under the direction
of Judge F. M. Black, with whom he continued his reading for over four
years. In 1878 he was admitted to the bar and a year later formed a part-
nership with J. S. Rust, which continued up to 1905, when the firm was dis-
solved, Mr. Lipscomb severing his connection with the bar and entering the
real-estate business. In this field he has operated quite extensively, has
negotiated many important realty transfers and has thus in direct measure
contributed to the welfare and business development of the city.

Mr. Lipscomb also figures prominently in Kansas City as a stalwart sup-
porter of the democracy, yet he is not an active party worker, neither has he
sought the rewards of office for his party fidelity. He has, however, served
for two terms as secretary of the board of election commissioners. During the
Spanish-American war he was appointed to fill a vacancy occasioned by the
former commissioner joining the army and on the expiration of that term
he was reappointed by Governor Stephens.

Mr. Lipscomb was married in 1879 to Miss Dora A. Crumbaugh, and they
have three children. Having spent his entire life in this county, Mr. Lips-
comb is widely known and that he has displayed many commendable char-
acteristics is indicated by the fact that among those who have known him from
boyhood are numbered his stanchest friends. He has a wide acquaintance, hav-
ing spent his entire life here, while his professional and business interests have
brought him into contact with many. He is an alert, enterprising man, pos-
sessing the progressive spirit that characterizes the times and while making for
himself a creditable position in the business world, he is also mindful of the
duties and obligations of citizenship.


Jere Stephen Lillis was the youngest bank president in the United
States when he became the chief executive officer of the Western Exchange
Bank of Kansas City. The ability and clear conception which he has dis-
played in financial circles makes him the peer and associate (of those who are
many years his senior and yet who entertain the highest respect for his sound
judgment, keen discrimination and capable management. He has passed
through consecutive stages of development and advancement, putting his
powei-s to the practical test and learning by experience to place a correct
valuation upon the opportunities and advantages offered. Born in Lexing-
ton, Missouri, December 3, 1865, he is one of the eleven children of Jame3
and Margaret (Jordan) Lillis.


His father, a general railroad contractor, was a native of Ireland, who
in his boyhood came to America and was reared in the Green jNIountain
state. He removed westward to j\Iissouri jjrior to the Civil war and served
as a colonel in the state militia during the period of hostilities. Following
the close of the war he engaged in contracting with General Joe Shelby,
and in 1882 came to Kansas City and in connection with William J. Smith
built the first cable railroads of Kansas City, of Omaha and Denver. About
ten years have passed since his demise. Of the family of eleven children
all are still living and the Rt. Rev. Thomas F. Lillis, a brother of our sub-
ject, is now a bishop of the Leavenworth diocese and resides in Kansas Cit}',

Jere S. Lillis spent his boyhood days in Lexington, Missouri, to the
age of sixteen, when he came to Kansas City and completed his education
in private schools, pursuing a three years' college course in Atchison, Kan-
sas. He was graduated in 1884 and throughout the period of his business
career has been identified with banking interests. His early connection with
financial affairs was the private banking firm of H. S. Mills & Son at Sixth
and Delaware streets. He had been with the house for four years when it
was incorporated under the name of Bank of H. S. Mills and Mr. Lillis be-
came its cashier. His purchase of stock from time to time enabled him to
secure control of the bank in 1892 and he changed its name to the Western
Exchange Bank, of which he has since been the president. This has become
one of the strong and reliable financial enterprises of the city, the safe, con-
servative policy which was instituted b}"" Mr. Lillis having always been main-
tained in its management and control. In addition to his banking interests
Mr. Lillis has also had charge of the family estate and has engaged ex-
tensively in the purchase and sale of realty, confining his operations in this
line to the best business property of the city. His attention has been devoted
entirely to his banking and real-estate interests and he has become connected
with no business venture which he has not personally managed nor in which
he has not attained most gratifying success. His labors in the building and
in (hr iiii]ir()Vcmont of real estate have contributed in large measure to the
promotion of Kansas City along substantial lines. To him is due almost
entirely the credit for starting the tide of business toward INIcGee and Fast
Twelfth streets and thus broadening the business district in that direction.

Mr. Ijjli- lias never had any desire for public life and the honoi-s and
emoluments of office have had no attraction for him. He is connected with
all of the banking associations and with the Merchants & jManufacturers
Association, wliilc in more specifically social lines he is connected with tlie
Kansas City, the Country, tlie Elm Ridge and the Evanston Golf Clubs.
He is also a member of the Malta Bend Gun Club and finds his chief recre-
ation in golfing or with the automobile, and when opportunity oflcr- for
more extended rest he employs liis lime in travel, sojourning for a montli
or two each winter in California or in Florida. ]\Tusic. too, has great at-
traction for him and he makes opportnnity for the cultivation of those graces
of character which promote culture and give one the broader view of life


that cannot be attained when interest^) are concentrated entirely along bus-
ines.-« liiie.s. His ijolitical support is given to the democracy and his religious
faith is that of the Roman Catholic church. A man of fine physique and
athletic build, he is pleasant and genial in manner but modest and unassum-
ing in deportment. The consensus of public opinion, however, accords him
notable prominence as a financier.


William Tobener, for many years connected with the tobacco trade of
Kauisas City, is now living retired save for the supervision which he gives to
his property interests, for in former years he invested quite largely in city
real estate. He is one of the nine children born unto Henry and Sophia
Tobener. The father died in St. Louis in 1849, when his son William was
about eleven years of age. The latter's birth occurred in 1838, and m 1848
he accompanied his parents on their emigration to the new world, the voyage
being made in a sailing vessel which was six weeks in reaching the harbor
of New Orleans.

William Tobener remained in St. Louis until 1852, when at the early
age of fourteen years he crossed the plains with an ox-team to Eldorado
county, California, making the long and tedious journey over the hot, sandy
stretches and through the mountain passes until he gained the Pacific slope.
There he went through the usual experiences of the miner in California in
early days. For fourteen years he was engaged in mining and was quite
successful. Returning to the Mississippi valley he located in Kansas City in
1866 and entered the cigar and tobacco business in connection with his
brother Henry under the firm name of H. Tobener & Brother on Grand
avenue, where they successfully carried on trade until 1880. The partner-
ship was then dissolved and Mr. Tobener began business on his own account
at Fifteenth and Grand avenue, where he remained for six years. He then
bought one hundred and thirty-two feet on Fifteenth street and seventy-
five feet on Cherry street and in 1890 erected a large two-story brick build-
ing for store and living room.?. He also built other flats and is the owner
of ninety feet on Fifteenth street farther east. From time to time he has
invested in realty and from his property he now derives a good income.
His home is at No. 1430 Cherry street, where he is still living, and although
he has retired from the tobacco trade he is kept comfortably busy with the
supervision of his real-estate interests.

Mr. Tobener was married in Kansas City in 1867 to Miss Barbara Sell-
man, who was born in New York but in early girlhood came to this city with
her father, John Selman, the journey being made by boat. For some years
Mr. Selman was coroner of Jackson county. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Tobener
were born seven children, of whom five survive, namely: Henry W., George,
Mrs. Fredrica McAulev, Mrs. Frances Kane and Mrs. Louise Wood-^. The


wife and mother died in 1901, leaving many friends as well as her immedi-
ate family to mourn the loss.

Mr. Tobener is one of the two surving charter members of Temple
Lodge, No. 299, A. F. & A. M., and has always been much interested in
the work of this society. He is, moreover, one of the well known democrats
of the city and has been a delegate to the conventions of the party for over
thirty-five years. He is not, however, a politician in the sense of office seek-
ing, although he served as weight and measure inspector under Mayor Milton
McGee. His life has been varied in its phases and experiences. Born across
the water, spending his early boyhood in St. Louis, and his youth and early
manhood upon the frontier of the far west, he has come to enjoy in the even-
ing of life a well earned rest without further recourse to labor, save for the
supervision of the property he has acquired and from which he derives a
good annual income.


M. Freeman Smith is secretary of Atmospheric Condensation Company
of Kansas City. Since entering upon his business career he has made good
use of his opportunities and has improved his advantages, so that his busi-
ness life has been marked by steady progress. He was born March 26, 1865,
in Dowagiac, Michigan, a son of Mason F. and Katharine (Mcintosh)
Smith. His literary education was completed in the high school of South
Haven, Michigan, from which he was graduated on the 1st of June, 1884.
Since that time he has learned many valuable lessons in the school of expe-
rience and his keen observation and retentive memory have greatly broadened
his knowledge. He entered commercial life as an employe in a wholesale
clothing house in Chicago and later eagerly embraced the opportunity of
engaging in business on his own account as a merchant of Rocky Ford,

In iMay, 1903, he came to Kansas City as representative of the Railway
Commercial Cabinet & File Company of Chicago, and subsequently became
a member of the Atmospheric Condensation Company, assuming manage-
ment of the sales department. This company is an advocate of the superiority
of steam condensation by means of saturating air as a cooling agent and has
control of the flask system patented by Arthur Penncll for utilizing prop-
erties of saturating air for the liquifying of steam for ice making purposes.
This system the company reconnnends as especially economical and there-
fore desirable. Among the important things claimed for it are also the
reduction of water consumption, the purifying of boiler feed and a great
saving in fuel. This business is being developed along modern lines and
is enjoying a substantial growth as it is accepted more and more largely on
the market. Mr. Smith is a stockholder in the Gerhaz Piano Company, of
Joliet, Illinois.







On the 14tli of June, 1894, in Joliet, Mr. Smith was married to Miss
Gertrude Hyland and unto them have been born two sons and a daughter:
Ma:;on F., Minnie J., and Asahel K. In politics Mr. Smith is independent,
preferring to cast his ballot regardless of party ties. In religious faith he is
a Presbyterian, and he is a Mason, having taken the degree of the blue lodge
and chapter. His life has been actuated by high purposes, and in his busi-
ness career a laudable ambition, combined with persistency of purpose and
straightforward dealing, have secured him the success which he now enjoys
and which he richly merits.


Among those to whom fate has vouchsafed a period of rest to crown
years of earnest, unremitting toil, is David S. Orrison, now living retired
at No. 220 Olive street, in Kansas City. He was born July 6, 1836, on
the boundary line between Stark and Columbiana counties in Ohio. His
father, Annanias Orrison, w^as a native of Virginia and represented one of
the old families of that state. The mother bore the maiden name of Hannah
Crumbecker, and they removed to Ohio in the '40s, spending their remain-

Online LibraryCarrie Westlake WhitneyKansas City, Missouri; its history and its people 1808-1908 (Volume 2) → online text (page 43 of 65)