Samuel Barker Amidon.Success in any profession, in any avenue of business, is not a matter of spontaneity but represents the result of the application of definite subjective forces and the controlling of objective agencies in such a way as to achieve desired ends. As a member of the legal profession Mr. Amidon has enjoyed for many years a reputation which well exemplifies the truth of the foregoing statements. He is also an interested principal in several financial, industrial and commercial enterprises of the city and state and is one of the distinctively representative citizens of Wichita. Progressive and energetic in the conduct of his various duties and in the management of his various commercial interests, loyal and public-spirited as a citizen, he holds a secure position in the confidence and esteem of the community and has contributed in large measure to the advancement of the city.
Samuel B. Amidon is a native of Ohio, born on his father's farm near Perry, Lake county, May 3, 1863, the son of Henry W. and Mary Ette (Barker) Amidon. His ancestors, paternal and maternal, were among the early settlers of the Connecticut colony and numbered among them were men who achieved distinction in the French and Indian wars, the war of the Revolution and in the commercial era which followed. Henry N. Amidon, the father of Samuel B., was born in Lake county, Ohio, Dec. 21, 1821, his father having been a pioneer settler of the Western Reserve, and descended from French Huguenot ancestry. He was a farmer throughout his life and a man of influence in his section. He lived to the advanced age of eighty-six years, his death having occurred on Dec. 14, 1908. He married, when a young man, Mary Ette Barker, born in Lake county, Ohio, in April, 1823, and a descendant of the English immigrant Barker who was one of the founders of the Connecticut colony. Mrs. Amidon preceded her husband in death in 1898. Of this union were born six children: Andrew A., a prominent attorney of Painesville, Ohio, who died in 1888; Alice A., wife of James C. Cannon; Rebecca S., lady principal of the Central High School; Nellie M., lady principal of the High School of Commerce, both of Cleveland, Ohio; Henry N., a successful physician of Painesville, Ohio, and Samuel B., the subject of this article.
Samuel B. Amidon received his early educational discipline in the public schools of his native county. He was graduated at the Normal School at Geneva in 1882 and was a student in both Oberlin and Hiram colleges. He taught two terms before reaching his majority. In 1884 he began the study of law and had as his preceptors his brother, Andrew A. and J. B. Borroughs of Painesville, Ohio. He was admitted to the bar at Columbus, Ohio, Feb. 2, 1886, and the following September he came to Kansas, locating for practice in Wichita, where he has since resided. He soon won recognition as one of the able and energetic members of the bar of southern Kansas and built up one of the most lucrative practices in Sedgwick county. In 1903 he formed a partnership with Judge David M. Dale and the firm of Dale & Amidon still obtains. This firm is one of the most prominent and influential in the state and includes among its clients a number of the most important financial, industrial and commercial interests of southern Kansas. During his practice, which has covered a span of twenty-five years, Mr. Amidon has appeared in connection with the most important litigations in the state and federal courts. He is especially fortified in his wide and comprehensive knowledge of the science of jurisprudence, a man of strong character and individuality, an orator of no mean power, and in argument logical and convincing. His political allegiance has been given to the Democratic party and of his party and its policies he has ever been a consistent and active supporter. He was elected county attorney of Sedgwick county in 1896 and reëlected in 1898, but has since refused to become a candidate for office. His practical activities have not been confined to the practice of law, however, as he has been one of the most active and influential factors in the development of the financial and commercial interests of Wichita. He was the most active force in the organization of the Western Biscuit Company, of which he is vice-president; the Brooks Tire-Machine Company, of which he is president; the Western Furniture Company, of which he is vice-president; the Wichita Casket Company, of which he is vice-president; the Morton-Simmons Hardware Company; the Martin Metal Manufacturing Company; the Anawalt-Campbell Mercantile Company, and the T. M. Deal Lumber companies, in each of which he is a director. He has extensive banking interests in Wichita and nearby towns; is a director in the Fourth National Bank of Wichita; the controlling force and president of the First National Bank of Mount Hope; vice-president of the Maize State Bank, the Kechi State Bank and the Valley Center State Bank; a director in the Peck State Bank, and was active in the organizing of all but the Wichita institution. He is recognized by the banking fraternity of Kansas as an able and discriminating financer, and takes an active part in the administration of the business of these institutions. Mr. Amidon is a Thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason and is affiliated with Midian Temple, Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, of Wichita, of which he is potentate. He is a past exalted ruler of Wichita Lodge No. 427, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias.
On Nov. 15, 1893, Mr. Amidon married Miss Alice Noyes, daughter of the late Aaron B. Noyes of Wichita. Mrs. Amidon is a woman of broad culture and refinement and popular in the social circles of Wichita in which she is a leader. She and her husband take an active interest in the various charities of the city and are generous contributors to their support. Mr. Amidon is in all respects a high type of the unassuming, conservative American, diligent in his various duties and commercial affairs and conscientious in all things. In his profession he has won distinctive recognition, and in the commercial and financial field a large and substantial success. His methods have been clean, capable and honest and he is possessed of a well earned popularity and the esteem which comes only through honorable living.Pages 1206-1208 from volume III, part 2 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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