Benjamin Bolton, president of the Scranton State Bank, is an Englishman, born at Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, Jan. 7, 1836. His father, Jonathan Bolton, was also a native of England, where he was reared and educated. He was a miner in England and in 1840 came to the United States and located in Pennsylvania. He continued to work in the coal mines around Pittsburgh until his death in 1864. Benjamin's mother, whose maiden name was Ann Herst, was also a native of England.
Benjamin was only four years of age when his parents came to America and he first attended school at Mount Washington, near Pittsburgh. Subsequently he went to school in Pittsburgh. He grew to manhood in Pennsylvania and at the beginning of the Civil war enlisted in the Forty-ninth Pennsylvania infantry, Army of the Potomac. He was on duty at Harrisburg and after Lee's surrender was sent to North Carolina. After his discharge from the army he returned home, but believed there were more chances for a young man in the West and in 1872 came to Kansas. He joined one of the early settlements and developed a farm in Wabaunsee county. For ten miles to the west the county was practically unsettled at that time. The Kansas Indians roamed over the country at will, and it was no infrequent sight to see them hunting and fishing along the streams. Mr. Bolton lived on his farm until 1883, when he started a general store at Paxico under the firm named of Bolton & Bros. and continued in business until 1891, when he sold out and retired from active life. But the habit of a lifetime was too strong and in 1904 Mr. Bolton engaged in banking, becoming the head of the Scranton State Bank. Under his management the business of the institution has enlarged and it is one of the sound financial houses of Kansas. Mr. Bolton is also interested in mining enterprises, having an interest in the High Tariff Mining Company of Joplin, Mo., with his son, C. F. Bolton, and others.
In 1857, Mr. Bolton married Jane the daughter of William and Isabella Black, who came to America from Scotland. Mr. Black was a miner in the old country and followed that vocation in Pennsylvania. He founded and built up the town of Green Oak, Pa. Seven children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Bolton: Wesley S., engaged in the grain business; William F., who lives in Denver and deals in real estate; John N., who runs a general store at Alta Vista, Kan.; Thomas B., a farmer in Oklahoma; Charles F., cashier of the Scranton State Bank, and two daughters who are married and live in Oklahoma. Mrs. Bolton died in 1899 and in 1903 Mr. Bolton married Elizabeth Hardaker of Newcastle, Pa., and she died in 1904. Mr. Bolton has many friends and is regarded as one of the prosperous and most substantial business men of Scranton.Page 1148 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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