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Hamilton Mack Spalding

Cloud county is much indebted to H. M. Spalding for the interest he manifests in every worthy project, and there is no, one man more distinctly associated with the progress and advancement of Concordia than he. H. M. Spalding was born at Lockport, Niagara county, New York, December 14, 1832, and has a lineage that might well be a source of pride and ambition. His ancestors were represented in a prominent way during the colonial settlement of the United States. He is a son of N. Mack and Sarah (Ellicott) Spalding. N. M. Spalding was an old and well-known business man of western New York. H. M. Spalding is a direct descendant. of Edward Spalding, who came from England with the distinguished Sir George Yeardley in the year 1619, and was a member of the Virginia colony. Edward Spalding afterward emigrated to Massachusetts. This branch of the Spalding family has been noted for the number of successful business men in it.

Through his mother Mr. Spalding traces his lineage back to the Ellicotts, another family prominently identified with the early history of this country. Andrew Ellicott was the first surveyor general of the United States. It was he who surveyed and laid out the city of Washington, District Columbia, and was the first instructor of mathematics in the United States West Point Military Academy. His brother, Joseph E., surveyed and laid out the city of Buffalo, New York. Ellicott square of that city was named for him. Mr. Spalding prides himself on being an American citizen and also in the fact that both his paternal and maternal ancestors took an active part in the Revolutionary war.

Mr. Spalding came to Concordia, Kansas, in 1872 and engaged as clerk in the store of H. A. Lockwood, which occupied his time for fifteen months. In the summer of 1874 he purchased an interest in this stock of general merchandise and the firm assumed the name of Lockwood & Spalding. Upon the death of Mr. Lockwood two months later, Mr. Spalding purchased his late partner's interest in the business and continued until the spring of 1878, when he sold to W. G. Patrick and engaged in farming and stock raising. In 1878 he formed a partnership with John Tate, tinder the firm name of Spalding & Tate, for the purpose of shipping live stock and grain, raising cattle and dealing in real estate. May 22, 1880, they brought into Cloud county six head of blooded cattle-one bull and five cows. This firm was the first to ship in and keep up a herd of registered short horn cattle. Mr. Spalding kept a large herd of fine cattle for twenty years and took much interest in blooded stock.

In 1879 he was elected county treasurer and was the first Democrat elected to a county office in Cloud county, assuming the duties of this office from October, 1880, to October, 1882. In 1883 Mr. Spalding helped to organize the First National Bank of Concordia and was its first president. In 1884 he bought an interest in and took charge of the Concordia flouring mills, and later became sole proprietor, operating them for eight years. He also put in the electric light plant in Concordia, which he controlled for years, keeping it up to date by constantly adding modern improvements. He is now president of the Concordia Electric Light Company and its principal stockholder.

He was again elected county treasurer in the autumn of 1895 and in 1891 received evidence of recognition of his having served the people with general satisfaction and with credit to himself by being re-elected.

He is the only man elected to and holding this office three terms in Cloud county. Mr. Spalding has long since established himself as a man capable of assuming various lines of important industries. His natural ability along with enterprising spirit and capacity for work have gained him a record as a prominent business man and semi-public character.

He was married to Martha E. Sherman, of Wrights Corners, Niagara county, New York, March 29, 1875. They are the parents of two promising sons, Edward H. and Merrill E. The former is taking a complete course in mechanical engineering at the Rose Polytechnic Institute, Terre Haute, Indiana, and the latter, Merrill E., is a cadet of the United States Military Academy at West Point. Mr. Spalding and family occupy a pleasant home on West Sixth street, where they have lived for the past twenty-five years.

Source: Biographical history of Cloud County, Kansas: biographies of representative citizens; published 1903, 915 pgs.

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