J. D. Weltmer, Hiawatha, Kans., secretary of the Mutual Telephone Company, and active in many other local enterprises, is a native of Kansas. He was born in Brown county, November 19, 1859, and is a son of J. J. and Elizabeth (Belk) Weltmer, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Kentucky. They were among the early settlers of Brown county, locating there in 1855, and came directly from Buchanan county, Missouri. The father was a miller in early life, but after coming to Kansas followed farming and stock raising. J. D. Weltmer is the second in order of birth, of a family of six children. He received his early education in the public schools, and later attended normal institutes. In early life he engaged in teaching and followed that vocation, in all, twelve years in Brown county. He then engaged in a mercantile business with his father at Hamlin, Kans., for four years, when he engaged in farming and at the same time taught school. He operated his farm with hired help until his farming interests had developed to such an extent that he found it more profitable to give up teaching, and devote himself exclusively to farming In 1894 he was elected township trustee, and re-elected to that office, serving four years. In 1898, he removed to a small farm adjoining the town of Hiawatha, and in 1899 was elected county clerk of Brown county, and re-elected in 1902, serving two terms, and one additional year, on account of the change in the law governing the term of that office. He was one of the organizers of the Citizen's State Bank of Hiawatha, in 1907, and at the opening of the bank, in January, 1908, became cashier, and served in that capacity until 1912. In February of that year he was appointed State Statistician for Kansas, for the United States Agricultural Department. Prior to his appointment the headquarters for Kansas of that department had been at Topeka, but he changed it to Hiawatha, and operated from there, and held that office for two years. He took an active part in the reorganization of the Brown County Fair Association, and is now secretary of the association, a position which he has held several years. In 1912, Mr. Weltmer was elected secretary of the Hiawatha Mutual Telephone Company, an office which he has since held. This company was organized in January, 1905, at Hiawatha, Kans., with a capital stock of $10,000.00, and immediately began the construction of a telephone system in Hiawatha and vicinity. The company met with severe opposition from competitors and otherwise at first, but by persistance, and capable management, it has become one of the flourishing and substantial institutions of Northeastern Kansas. At the close of the first year, their total number of telephones numbered but one hundred, and now they have over six hundred and fifty phones instilled, and the company is in excellent financial condition, clear of indebtedness with a satisfactory surplus. In 1906, Mr. Weltmer was elected a member of the Hiawatha City Council, and has served in that capacity for eight years, seven years of which he was president of that body. When he became a member of the council, none of the streets of Hiawatha were paved and during his term of office over eight miles of pavement was completed, which is unusual for a town the size of Hiawatha, and today the well-appearing streets of the town, with a brilliantly lighted white way, readily convinces the observer that it was worth-while, and that Hiawatha has recently passed through the hands of a progressive business administration. Mr. Weltmer was married August 17, 1882, to Miss Hattie Moore, daughter of Dr. W. E. and Mary E. (Moore) Moore of Missouri. The Moore family came to Kansas, and the father practiced his profession in Reserve, Hamlin and Severance for a time, and later returned to Brown county, where he died. To Mr. and Mrs. Weltmer have been born four children: Luther F., Frank L., Nellie, and Ivan D. Mr. Weltmer is a Republican, and has always taken an active part in the councils of his party. He was chairman of the Republican County Central Committee in 1912, and was a member of the Congressional Committee for a number of years. He has been a delegate to numerous county, congressional and state conventions, and in 1908, served as assistant sergeant-at-arms in the National Republican Convention. His fraternal affiliations are with the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Modern Woodmen of America, Kansas Fraternal Citizens, Knights of Pythias, Eastern Star, Pythian Sisterhood, Royal Neighbors, and Improved Order of Red Men. He is a member of the Christian church, and a member of the board of trustees. Mrs. Weltmer is also a member of the Christian church, and holds membership in the Eastern Star and the Royal Neighbors and is recorder of the latter organization.Pages 180-182 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.
TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I
TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
J | K | L | Mc | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z
Background and KSGenWeb logo were designed and are copyrighted by
Tom & Carolyn Ward
for the limited use of the KSGenWeb Project.
Permission is granted for use only on an official KSGenWeb page.
Home Page for Kansas
Search all of Blue Skyways
The KSGenWeb Project