Elmer Ellsworth Ames.Of the many young men who have come to Kansas at the threshold of their careers, and whose sole capital at the time of their coming consisted of energy, pluck, perseverance and character, there can be found but few better examples of success than that which has been achieved by Elmer Ellsworth Ames, vice-president of the Central National Bank of Topeka. When Mr. Ames came to Kansas, more than twenty-five years ago, there was but little to encourage him to locate here, for it was at a time when the state was in the midst of one of the most critical periods in its history. Its then meager products had little value, its great resources were yet practically undeveloped, and the dawn of its present wonderful prosperity had not yet begun to break. Despite the rather gloomy outlook Mr. Ames resolved to take passage on the Sunflower ship, let her sailing be on rough seas or calm. He did so, and for more than a quarter of a century he has been an integral factor in the great state's progress, having been during nearly the whole time identified with its banking interests.
Elmer Ellsworth Ames was born on a farm in Livingston county, Illinois, Sept. 26, 1862. His father, Isaac Ames, was born at Farmington, Me., April 9, 1824. He was a farmer and a merchant and took an active part in the public affairs of Illinois, to which state he had removed, in 1849, having, besides performing other public functions, served as a member of her legislature. Isaac H. Ames, paternal grandfather of Elmer E. Ames, was of English descent, and was descended from a family of Revolutionary fame. The mother of Mr. Ames was Aurilia Mooar prior to her marriage. She was born at Wilton, Me., in 1823, and died at Streator, Ill., in 1900.
Elmer Ellsworth Ames was but a boy of seven years when the family removed to Streator, Ill. He was reared there and was educated in its public schools. Later he graduated from the Union College of Law, Chicago, Ill., and was admitted to the bar, but has never practiced law. In 1885 he came to Kansas to make his fortune. He located at Norton, Norton county, where he resided until 1907, when he removed to Topeka. While a resident of Norton he was engaged in the banking business, having been one of the organizers of the First National Bank of Norton, which was founded in 1887. He served as president of that bank from 1890 until 1900, and he is still its vice-president and a member of its board of directors. From 1900 to 1906 he held the position of National Bank Examiner for the State of Kansas, and for Kansas City, Mo., receiving his appointment from William B. Ridgely, the comptroller of the currency. He resigned that office on account of ill health, in 1906, and after a year of rest and recreation he located in Topeka, where he at once became cashier of the Central National Bank. Upon the consolidation of the Central National Bank with the Capital National Bank on Jan. 1, 1910, Mr. Allies was advanced to the office of vice-president of the consolidated institution, which position he now holds. Mr. Ames is interested also in several other banks throughout the State of Kansas as a stockholder and as a director. He is president of the Bankers' Deposit Guaranty and Surety Company of Topeka, and is treasurer of the Osage Fire Insurance Company of Topeka.
Mr. Ames was married June 15, 1887, to Miss Anne Elizabeth Sawyer of Streator, Ill., an acquaintance and schoolmate of his boyhood. They have three daughters: Aurilia Mooar, Helen Mar, and Julia Ann. Mr. Ames is a Republican in politics, but he has never been a candidate for office, nor held one, except the position of National Bank Examiner, mentioned above. He is a member of the Commercial Club, the Topeka Club, the Elks Club, and the Country Club, all of Topeka, and he is a Thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason. By the practice of correct principles, fair means and honest methods, he has won a creditable degree of success, and at the same time he has contributed to the moral, social and financial advancement of one of the American commonwealths. He is well and favorably known throughout Kansas, and he is a splendid type of that vast army of men responsible for the development of the great Middle West.Pages 675-676 from volume III, part 1 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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