Biography of Walter Gordon Cadmus

Walter Gordon Cadmus is one of the prominent business men of Parsons. He had had a long and active career in varied lines of enterprise, but now for many years had been a factor in the Parsons Cold Storage and Crystal Ice Company, of which he is secretary, treasurer and general manager.

His Cadmus ancestry had its original seat in Holland. His great-grandfather emigrated from Holland and settled at Plainfield, New Jersey, soon after the close of the Revolutionary war. His Grandfather Andrew L. Cadmus was born at Plainfield, New Jersey, in 1809, became a physician and surgeon, practiced for many years in New York City, and while still a resident there he died at Saratoga Springs, New York, in 1881.

Daniel F. Cadmus, a son of this physician and father of the Parsons business man, was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, in 1834. He spent his early life in Hoboken, New York City, Jersey City, and that vicinity. In 1854 he moved to Henry, Illinois, located on a farm there, and was married. He subsequently moved to Boone County, Iowa, where he conducted a sheep ranch. His business interests took him to the states of Illinois, Missouri, Alabama, Virginia, and in 1869 he paid his first visit to Kansas. He remained in the state from 1873 until 1881, when he went to Alabama, and his death occurred in 1888 at Sunnyside, Arkansas. He was independent in politics and a member of the Presbyterian Church. He married Phoebe A. Hoagland, who was born in 1830 in Plainfield, New Jersey. She died at Selma, Alabama, in 1882. Of her children Charles, the oldest, died at the age of twenty-six in Pratt County, Kansas, where he was a rancher. Mary J. married J. E. Mays and they live on their ranch at Garden Plain, Kansas. The third in age is Walter G. Harriett C. is the wife of James H. Weigley, a merchant at Richland Center, Wisconsin.

Walter Gordon Cadmus was born October 27, 1862, while his parents lived in Boone County, Iowa. He grew up and gained his early education in different localities. From 1873 to 1877 his parents lived at Sedgewick in Harvey County, Kansas, and while there he attended the public schools. He received a high school education, finishing his schooling in Iola and Oswego, Kansas.

On leaving school in 1881 he became clerk for the Oswego Coal Company and was located at Weir for two and a half years. The next five and a half years he spent on a ranch in Pratt County. For one year the Corbin Banking Company of New York employed him as a special inspector of the company’s loans in Arkansas and South Carolina. Mr. Cadmus then resumed the coal business, and for four and a half years was connected with the Kansas & Texas Coal Company at Leavenworth.

His home and business headquarters have been in Parsons since August 1, 1895. For a number of years he was connected with the coal and grain firm of Busby & Smith Company. On January 1, 1904, he engaged in the ice business as part owner of the Parsons Cold Storage and Crystal Ice Company. He is one of the principal stockholders in this corporation, and is its secretary, treasurer and manager. The company was organized in 1892, and had a capital of $50,000 until 1905, when it was increased to $75,000, with corresponding enlargement of the capacity of the plant. From 1892 to 1903 the company supplied ice all over Southeastern Kansas and Northeastern Oklahoma. Since 1903 the local business had taken practically the entire output. The company now manufactures 70 tons of ice a day, and had storage capacity for 1,200 tons. The plant is at North Boulevard and Lincoln Avenue and the offices are at 200 North Central Avenue. The officers of the Parsons Cold Storage and Crystal Ice Company are: C. A. Roter, president; J. F. Steele, vice president; and Mr. Cadmus secretary, treasurer and manager.

Besides his own home at 321 South Twenty-fifth Street Mr. Cadmus owned a dwelling house at 1824 Felix Avenue. Mr. Cadmus is a progressive in politics. While living in Pratt County he served a year as township trustee of Richland Township and in Parsons had been a member of the board of education for 3½ years. He was on the board when the white and colored children were separated in the public schools. He belongs to the Parsons Commercial Club, and fraternally is affiliated with Parsons Lodge, No. 117, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Parsons Lodge, No. 12, Ancient Order United Workmen, and Parsons Lodge, No. 62, Anti-Horse Thief Association.

In 1885 at Independence, Missouri, he married Miss Sarah E. Crawley, daughter of D. S. and Sarah Crawley. Her father, now deceased, was a minister of the Latter Day Saints Church. Mr. and Mrs. Cadmus have four children. Clara, a graduate of the Parsons High School, is still at home with her parents. Daniel H., who graduated in mining and engineering at the University of Kansas, is now superintendent of mines for the Central Coal and Coke Company at Huntington, Arkansas. Charles E., who resided at 2316 Belmont Avenue in Parsons is assistant cashier at the local offices of the International Harvester Company. Walter G., Jr., is a student in the University of Kansas, taking a course in architectural engineering.



Connelley, William E. A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans. Chicago : Lewis, 1918. 5v. Biographies can be accessed from this page: Kansas and Kansans Biographies.

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