|WILLIAM H. GRAHAM.|
William H. Graham, president and
general manager of the Model Market Company of Laramie, is one of
that city’s aggressive business men whose rise in commercial circles
has been solely through his own efforts. Mr. Graham, while but a man
of middle age, has for almost a quarter of a century been identified
with the market business and from childhood, with the exception of
two years, has been a resident of Laramie. A native son of Wyoming,
he was born in Carter, December 1 1, 1878, his parents being Kennedy
Laurie and Elizabeth (Cox) Graham. The father was born October 31,
1846, in Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland, a son of Robert and Janet
(Stewart) Graham, the former being a carpenter and contractor. Both
Mr. and Mrs. Robert Graham were members of distinguished Scotch
clans, the Grahams and the Stewarts. Kennedy L. Graham came to the
United States in 1865 with his brother-in-law, R. W. Baxter, who
later was road-master of a division of the Union Pacific Railroad
from Rawlins to Green River, Wyoming. When he first came to the
United States, Mr. Graham was employed on the Pennsylvania Railroad
in New Jersey. He came west when the work on the Union Pacific
Railroad was begun and was connected with the construction of the
line as it progressed westward. All during this time he aided in the
building operations of that road, after which he was made yard master
at Rawlins, and while thus serving he was married in Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania, on the 11th of April, 1872, to Miss Elizabeth Cox, a
native of Gloucester, England, born on the 3d of November, 1850. Her
parents were James and Sarah Ann (Mullen) Cox, who removed from
Gloucester to Birmingham, England, when Mrs. Graham, was but a little
child and in that city she was reared. In January, 1870, she came to
America and while on shipboard formed the acquaintance of Mr. Graham.
who was returning to this country after having paid a visit to his
old home in Scotland. Following their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Graham
began their domestic life in Rawlins, Wyoming. where they resided
until he accepted a position on the Central Pacific Railroad at
Ombey, Utah. A year later he returned to Wyoming and took up his
abode at Carter, where he lived until he accepted a position with the
Denver & Rio Grande and removed his family to Placer, Colorado,
where he was living at the time of his death, which occurred on the
1st of December, 1887, resulting from a railway accident. The
family continued to reside in Placer until April, 1890, when they
removed to Laramie. where Mrs. Graham still makes her home. The
children of the family are as follows. Janet E., born in Rawlins.
Wyoming, is now the widow of John W. Crawford, who was fireman on a
passenger train on the Union Pacific and was killed, in a collision
October 23, 1916. Electa M., born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is
the wife of John A. Gordon, of Butte, Montana. Robert Kennedy, born
in Carter, Wyoming, is manager of the Pacific Market of Laramie.
William H., born in Carter, Wyoming, is the subject of this review.
James L., born in Placer, Colorado, is now living in
Laramie. Jessie 0., born in Placer, is now the wife of Arthur
Bullock, of Lewiston, Idaho. Mrs. Graham at her husband’s death was
left with six children and her rearing of this family reflects great
credit upon her, indicating her sound judgment as well as her
devotion to her family.
William H. Graham acquired his education in the public schools of Laramie. When in his early teens he went to work in a rolling mill, where he was employed for two years. In 1895 he first became connected with the market business, beginning in a minor capacity as an employe, but he possessed energy and push and was of that type of young man that invariably advances. Four years later he secured an interest in the Cash Market Company and retained that connection until 1902, when he sold out and accepted the position of manager of the Rawlins Packing Company, a branch of the Hansen Mercantile Company, at Rawlins, Wyoming. This position he ably filled for about two years and then returned to Laramie in January, 1905, becoming manager of the Pacific Market and remaining as such for a year. He next founded the W. H. Graham Market as a branch of the Pacific Market and successfully conducted the business until 1913, when a consolidation of the Model Market and the W. H. Graham Market was effected under the name of the Model Market, which business, together with that conducted under the name of the Pacific Market, was incorporated on the 1st of February, 1918, as the Model Market Company, with Mr. Graham as the president and general manager. Every step which Mr. Graham has made in his business career has been a forward one, until now he is the executive head of one of the largest retail business enterprises of its kind in the state. His success is a just reward of his wonderful energy and never ceasing interest in his business. His wide acquaintance and personal popularity have come after long years in business circles, indicating the character and success of his efforts.
In 1901, in Laramie, Mr. Graham was united in marriage to Miss Anna Brown, a daughter of Thomas and Sarah A. Brown, early residents of Laramie. Mrs. Graham was born at what is now 515 South Second street in that city and, like her husband, is most widely and favorably known. In 1908 Mr. Graham built their home at No. 618 Sheridan street, where they have since resided. In politics Mr. Graham is a republican but has been too much absorbed in business matters to take much more than a voting interest in politics. However, in local affairs he carefully considers the capability of the candidate and the issues before the people and does not adhere blindly to party ties. He is a Scottish Rite Mason and belongs to Laramie Lodge, A. F. & A. M.; to Emanuel Commandery, K. T.; and to Korein Temple of the Mystic Shrine, exemplifying in his life the beneficent spirit and purpose of the craft. His entire career has been marked by progress and whether in business, fraternal or social relations he has commanded the confidence and goodwill of those with whom he has come in contact.