HENRY McGREW. - As a representative of one of the best known and most honored pioneer families of Kansas, as one who has been a resident of Wyandotte county since his infancy, as an able member of the bar of this county and as a business man whose activities in the field of real estate operations have done much to further the social and material progress of this favored section of the Sunflower commonwealth, Mr. McGrew is specially entitled to recognition in this history of Wyandotte county and its people. He was born at Lancaster, Keokuk county, Iowa, on the 18th of April, 1857, and is a son of Hon. James and Mary (Doggett) McGrew. A brief memoir is dedicated to his honored father on other pages of this work, and thus it is not necessary to repeat the data in the present article.
In the autumn of 1857, a few months after his birth, the parents of Henry McGrew removed from Iowa to Wyandotte county, Kansas, and here he was reared to adult age, in the meanwhile being afforded the advantages of the public schools of the old town of Wyandotte, the nucleus of the present metropolis of the county, Kansas City. Reared in a home of distinctive culture and under the benignant direction of a father who was long prominent and influential in public affairs in Kansas, it was perhaps but natural that Mr. McGrew should early decide to adopt the legal profession as offering a sphere of personal activity. In preparation for his chosen calling he finally entered the law department of the great University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1879 and from which he received the degree of Bachelor of Laws. He was forthwith admitted to the bar of Kansas and engaged in the practice of his profession in Wyandotte, now Kansas City. Here his success and prestige soon showed that he had made a wise choice of vocation, and here he continued in the active practice of his profession, as one of the representative members of the Wyandotte county bar, until 1904, when the demands of his large and important real estate business proved so insistent that since that time he has virtually given his entire attention to this important line of enterprise, in which he has not only been a successful broker but has also handled his own properties to a very large extent. He has brought about the improvement of much valuable realty in Wyandotte county and other sections of the state and is the owner of much property in Kansas City, which is his place of residence and his business headquarters. Governed by the highest principles of integrity, he has been fair and honorable in all his dealings, has shown a lively spirit of progressiveness and civic loyalty, and has done much to advance the best interests of the county that has been his home during virtually his entire life thus far. He is one of the popular citizens and influential business men of Kansas City, and while engaged in active professional work he was accorded distinctive marks of popular regard, in that he served as city attorney for five years and as county attorney for two years. He is a director of the Armourdale State Bank of Commerce, one of the staunch financial institutions of the county, and has other important capitalistic interests in his home city and county. In politics Mr. McGrew accords a staunch allegiance to the Republican party, and in the Masonic fraternity he has received the thirty-second degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, in which his affiliation is with Caswell Consistory, No. 5, in Kansas City. His maximum affiliation in the York Rite is with Ivanhoe Commandery, No. 21, Knights Templars, and at Leavenworth, this state, he holds membership in Abdallah Temple of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.
On the 6th of January, 1881, Mr. McGrew was united in marriage to Miss Julia Townsend, who was born at Racine, Wisconsin, and who is the youngest of the six children born to Joseph and Annie (Ratten) Townsend; of the children three others survive the honored parents, both of whom were born in England. The father was identified with railroad affairs during his entire active career and for many years prior to his death he had held the position of master car builder in the employ of the Chicago & Alton Railroad Company. Mr. and Mrs. McGrew have three sons: George, Joseph T., and Homer A.
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