Seeley, Senator William B. 1862-1933
SEELEY, KETCHAM, LODWICK, MORTON, DAVIS
Posted By: Pat Ryan White (email)
Date: 10/29/2011 at 16:32:53
SENATOR WILLIAM B. SEELEY, 1862 - 1933
In returning to Sharon cemetery [Lee County, IA], Senator Seeley has gone back home. Close by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Eli Seeley, established their home, and in which was born the Senator and his brothers and sisters. In the same neighborhood he attended school, grew up, married and established his own home and where his children were born. In the same neighborhood he retained his financial and real estate interests and his connections with the many families of his boyhood and young manhood.
W.B. Seeley was born in Harrison township, Lee county, March 4, 1862. He attended the local schools and the school at Primrose. Later he attended Elliott's Business college at Burlington. Turning to law he matriculated at the law department of the State University at Iowa City and graduated with the class of 1886, with the degree of L.L.B. He then returned to his old home and was immediately associated with his father in extensive agricultural, real estate and financial interests and which association continued until the death of his father. In 1890 Mr. Seeley was married to Miss Elizabeth Ketcham, daughter of the old and highly respected pioneer Ketcham family of Van Buren county. Mr. and Mrs. Seeley established themselves in what today is still known as the Clover Lawn farm, west of Le Crew station, and which is still owned by the family. Here the children of the family were born and lived until in 1900 when the family moved to this community and this has been their home ever since.
Shortly after moving here, Senator Seeley decided to build the beautiful home on Broadway, and which was occupied in 1902. It was natural that a man of Senator Seeley's capabilities and influence should be called upon to accept public office and public responsibility. He was for many years a member of the Board of Trustees of the Public Library. He served a long time on the School Board. Likewise he was called to the board of trustees of Iowa Wesleyan College, where he served many years, and was also for some years a trustee of Parsons college in Fairfield. He was long an official and supporter of the Presbyterian church of this city. Senator Seeley aside from his banking connections in Lee county and elsewhere was early connected in an official capacity with the Henry County Savings bank and the First National bank of this city.
Senator Seeley has been consistently identified with all the worth while movements of the town and county and in his quiet, almost timid, way assumed his full responsibility as a citizen. He was one man in this troubled world whose word was as good as his bond and he jealously guarded the honor of the Seeley name with a tenacity that never lost its grip to the very end.
Note should, by all means, be made of the administration of his brother's estate and in which the magnificent $80,000.00 Y.M.C.A. was built and presented to the community. The senator was a republican in politics and for two terms served this county in the Iowa senate, and in local political activities he was active until the last few years.
Three children came to the home, Florence, who is the wife of Mr. W.D. Lodwick of Winnetka, Ill.; June, the wife of Mr. C.D. Morton of River Forest, Ill. and Ben E. who lives here. Of the Senator's own family all have now passed on but a sister, Mrs. Davis of Kansas City.
Mt. Pleasant and Henry County have lost, by the removal of Senator Seeley, a man whose virtues, whose personal integrity, whose business ideals, whose standards of citizenship, might well be emulated.
[THE BYSTANDERS NOTES, 'Mt. Pleasant Daily News', Wednesday, April 19, 1933]
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