John Jacob Marty.A man's real worth to the community in which he lives is not a matter of the accumulation of wealth, the ownership of broad acres, or the controlling of commercial enterprises; except he use a portion of his wealth, his business influence and a part of his time in the upbuilding of his town, city or county, and to assist through advice and example, his fellow citizens to fruitful labor and prosperity, to live honorable lives, filled with kindness and helpful deeds. Therefore, a publication of this nature exercises its most important function when it takes cognizance of the life and labors of those citizens who have been material factors in the development and betterment of the commonwealth; that there may come objective lesson and incentive, and thus a tribute of appreciation. Clay county represents, in her present development, the persistent industry, unflaging zeal, and impregnable faith in the possibilities of her resources, of many men, numbered among whom is he whose name initiates this article. A pioneer resident of the county, in which he lived for thirty-five years, he was actively concerned in many phases of her development, was honored by his fellow citizens with election to public office, in which he served with credit and distinction. It is probable that within the limits of his activities, he was one of the most useful men the county has ever had.
John Jacob Marty was a native of Rhode Island, born on July 5, 1854, one of a family of nine children born to Henry and Anna (Marty) Marty, natives of Switzerland, who came to the United States in 1854, and located in Rhode Island, where the father followed his trade, that of a cooper. His death occurred in 1866, at the age of fifty-three. The widow became a resident of Kansas in 1870, locating in the western part of Clay county, where she resided until her death, which occurred on August 29, 1885, aged sixty-seven. She is survived by the following children: Matthew, Sarah, Anna, Henry, Fannie, Christopher, Sebastian and Joseph. Mariah and John Jacob, the subject of this article, are deceased.
John Jacob Marty passed his boyhood years in his native State, Rhode Island, becoming, to a great extent, self-supporting from the age of eight; and attended the public schools. He came with his widowed mother to Kansas in 1870, and in the western part of Clay county he secured employment as a cattle herder. He was ambitious, believed in himself, and desired above all things to become well educated and well informed, and with this end in view spent his nights in study, with the result that he was able to pass a satisfactory examination for a teacher's certificate. He was engaged in educational work for several years, his schools being held in log buildings. In 1873 he secured a position as bookkeeper with the Eberhardt Mining Company, of Eberhardt, Nev., and remained in this capacity until 1879, when he returned to Kansas and bought, with his savings, a tract of farm land in Clay county. In this field of enterprise, he prospered from the start, and within a few years he had accumulated a competence. He was from boyhood a student of civic and economic problems, and his interest in the policies of the political parties of the country was deep. He was first a Republican, but in after years was a consistent advocate of the principles of the Populist party, and became influential in its councils. Township offices were given him and his service in them was such that he was nominated and elected clerk of Clay county in 1892, and re-elected in 1894, serving four years. His administration of this department of the county's business was clean, capable and honest. Further public honor was given him in 1896, through his election to the lower house of the legislature, and served during the session of 1897 as chairman of one of the most important committees of the house, that of banks and banking. He was loyal to his constituency, stood for the interests of the common people, and was prominent in all the important legislation of the session, and was considered by his colleagues as one of the energetic and active leaders of his party therein. He entered the banking life of the State in 1902, when with the late John W. Bridenthal, he promoted the organization of the Citizens' State Bank of Longford, and was elected its cashier, a position he filled at the time of his death, which occurred on September 27, 1904. During the time in which he was the dominant executive of this institution, he demonstrated the possession of keen financial sense, that quality of diplomacy so essential to the cashier of the country bank, and a sound view of credits. His fraternal affiliations were with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and the Modern Woodmen of America.
On August 12, 1877, Mr. Marty married Miss Katherine Randall, the daughter of Harry and Anna Randall, of Eberhardt, Nev., who was born in San Francisco, Cal., April 17, 1862. He is survived by his widow and the following children: Isabella, born at Eberhardt, Nev., April 2, 1879, who succeeded her father as cashier of the Citizens' State Bank of Longford on September 29, 1904, and who is known to the banking fraternity as an able executive; Oliver, born at Longford, Kan., January 1, 1882, assistant cashier and a member of the directorate of the Citizens' State Bank of Longford; Alice, born at Longford, Kan., July 9, 1884, married in August, 1913, Walter Mariner, of Kansas City, Mo.; Grace, born December 5, 1886; Eva, born August 19, 1888, married on October 23, 1910, H. W. Fox, a merchant of Longford, Kan.; Bertha, born January 25, 1892; Almeda, born January 13, 1894, a graduate of Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kan., and at present a teacher of music in the schools of Anthony, Kan., and Sarah, born May 31, 1896.
Mr. Marty was in all respects a high type of the conservative, unassuming American, diligent in his commercial affairs and public duties and conscientious in all things. As a man among men, bearing his due share in connection with the practical activities and responsibilities of a work-a-day world he was successful; but above all he was rich in the possession of a well-earned popularity, in the esteem which comes from honorable living and in the affection which slowly develops only through unselfish works. His close associates were always men who had the welfare of the community at heart, and who were ready to assist, with time and money, any enterprise or measure which had for its object the betterment of commercial, civic or social conditions. In his business life he was the embodiment of honor and he was in his social and domestic life known for his love and helpfulness.Pages 416-418 from a supplemental volume 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 October 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM196. It is a single volume 3.
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