Walter Wells Ramey.Success in any line of occupation, 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. Mr. Ramey has realized a large and substantial success in the business world, for many years was a potent factor in educational betterment, and his career has well exemplified the truth of the forgoing statements. He occupies today a prominent place in the banking circles of the state, is the controlling force in one of the successful banks and the senior member of the firm owning the most important lumber enterprises in Riley county. Progressive and energetic in the management of his various business interests, loyal and public spirited as a citizen, he holds a secure position in the confidence and esteem of the community, and has contributed materially to the advancement of the city of Manhattan, in whose still greater commercial and civic prestige he is a firm believer. Walter Wells Ramey is a native of Ohio and was born on the old homestead, near the city of Zanesville, on May 30, 1855, son of Sanford W. and Sarah (McVey) Ramey. The Ramey family is of French ancestry and dates its founding in America from the early Colonial period, when two brothers came from France to the Colony of Virginia. Sanford Ramey, grandfather of Walter W., was one of the first settlers in what is now Muskingum county, Ohio, coming there from his native state of Virginia. He walked the entire distance along the trails, and near the present city of Zanesville took up land and became a successful farmer. His son, Sanford W. Ramey, was also a farmer, and occupied, until his death in 1902, the old family homestead, the scene of his father's pioneer hardships, trials and successes. He married, when a young man, Sarah McVey, a native of Bedford, Knox county, Ohio, born in 1847, of Scotch-Irish ancestry, and who died in 1900. Walter Wells Ramey secured his early educational discipline in the district schools of Muskingum county, Ohio. He was then matriculated in the Ada (Ohio) University, where he completed a four-year course in its literary department. He began his career as a teacher in 1876, and for a period of twenty-five years, or until 1900, was continuously identified with educational work, in one capacity or another. The years 1876-83 he spent as a teacher in the country schools of his native county. In July, 1883, he came to Topeka, Kan. He accepted the position of principal of the Silver Lake schools, which position he filled during the school years of 1883-84. In 1884 he accepted a similar position in the Eskridge schools, remaining at their head until January, 1889. In 1888, he was elected county superintendent of schools for Wabaunsee county and resided in Alma during his occupancy of this office. In 1891, he returned to Eskridge and again became principal of its schools, continuing during the school year of 1891-92. In the fall of 1892 he accepted a similar position in the schools of Waverly, Coffey county, where he remained during the school year of 1892-93 and 1893-94. In the fall of 1894, he became superintendent of schools of the city of Herington and remained in that capacity until the spring of 1900. During the vacation periods of 1892 to 1900 he was engaged as conductor in county normal institute work. As an educator, Mr. Ramey was progressive, energetic and able, and won deserved recognition as one of the foremost men in his profession in the state. In the spring of 1900, he returned to Eskridge and organized the Eskridge State Bank, of which he was made cashier. Of this institution he was the controlling executive and remained as such until 1906. Its capital was $10,000, and during the period of his management it accumulated an earned surplus of $7,000 and deposits of $90,000. In 1906, he disposed of his interests in Eskridge and removed to Manhattan, where he organized the Manhattan State Bank, of which he was elected president. Established with a capital of $50,000, its business has been of sound and continous growth. It has an earned surplus of $5,000, undivided profits of $3,000, and deposits of $150,000, while its directorate is composed of the most representative men in Riley county. In the organization, development and administration of the business of this institution, Mr. Ramey has been the dominant executive, and to his progressiveness, energy and resourcefulness are due the strength and high reputation of the organization. He is known to the banking fraternity as an able and discriminating financier and one who has brought the administrative policy of his bank up to the point of highest efficiency. He is also one of the twenty organizers and a vice-president of the Kansas State Bankers' Association. In September, 1908, he formed, with his brother, H. S. Ramey (see sketch), the firm of Ramey Brothers, and they purchased the stock and business of the Chicago Lumber Company, at Manhattan. Since acquiring this property they have succeeded in developing the most extensive business of its kind in Riley county. In the conduct of this enterprise Mr. Ramey gives his attention to its financing, his brother having the active management. About $50,000 is invested in yards, equipment and stock, and its trade territory includes the county. Mr. Ramey has been a life-long Republican. Essentially a business man, he has neither the time nor inclination for office, though he never neglects in the least his civic duties and obligations, and has taken an active and influential part in the councils of his party. He is a Master Mason and a member of the Methodist church. On Dec. 17, 1901, Mr. Ramey married Kate (Stover) Bennett, daughter of Jacob Stover, of Schaghticoke, N. Y. They are the parents of a daughter, Agnes Ramey, born Nov. 25, 1902. Mrs. Ramey is a member of the Methodist church, is president of its foreign mission society, a woman of culture and refinement and popular in the social circles of Manhattan in which she is a leader. Mr. Ramey is in all respects a high type of the constructive, unassuming American, diligent in commercial affairs and conscientious in all things. His work in the field of education was productive of much good to his adopted state, and his career in the field of finance promises much to that section in which he labors.Pages 324-326 from volume III, part 1 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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