Frank J. Stephenson, senior member of the firm of Stephenson & Stowe, general merchants at Blue Mound, Kan., is a native of Indiana, having been born in the city of Muncie, that state, May 27, 1867. He is the son of G. W. and Amanda (Thompson) Stephenson, the former of whom was born at Point Pleasant, Va., now West Virginia, and is the descendant of an old Virginia family of Scotch descent, while the latter was a native of Indiana. G. W. Stephenson left his native state and came westward to Indiana in 1858, and for a number of years was engaged in business at Muncie. In 1882 he brought his family to Kansas, locating first at Fort Scott, where he engaged in the mercantile business. He was subsequently similarly engaged at Moran and La Harpe, Allen county, until January, 1898, when he located in Blue Mound, Linn county, where he established the business now conducted by his son and Mr. Stowe. His active business career continued until 1903, when he sold his business to the present firm and retired to enjoy a well earned rest from business cares. The mother of our subject died in 1882, but the father is still living and resides in Blue Mound. Three sons and one daughter of these parents are living, namely: Mrs. L. A. Warfield, of St. Louis, Mo.; Frank J., of this review; W. T. Stephenson, a director of the Hamilton Brown Shoe Company, of St. Louis; and W. V. Stephenson, a physician at Osage City, Kan.
Frank J. Stephenson received his education in the public schools and I was associated with his father in the mercantile business until twenty-four years of age, thus early learning under his father's direction the principles so essential to a successful business career. At the age of twenty-four he accepted a position with a Kansas City wholesale house, and for the following six years was employed principally as a traveling salesman. He was sent to Blue Mound in 1898 to represent this house in settling up a business failure, and it was at this time that his father bought the interest of the failing owner and continued to manage the store until our subject purchased it. Mr. Stephenson, having enjoyed a good business training and being possessed of industry and admirable commercial judgment, soon firmly established his position in the business community, and now holds a position among the most enterprising and influential business men of Linn county. The business is managed along progressive lines and now occupies four adjoining rooms on Main street, each with a 25 foot frontage and 100 feet deep. One room is given exclusively to carpets, one to drygoods, clothing and shoes, one to groceries and queensware, and one is a feed and ware room, and as a whole this store is one of the most complete to be found in any similarly sized town in Kansas. Mr. Stephenson is a progressive, public-spirited citizen, and through his efficiency as a business man he has not only promoted his own success, but the prosperity of Blue Mound and Linn county as well. In fraternal circles Mr. Stephenson affiliates as a member of the Masonic order and of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.
On Jan. 16, 1894, Mr. Stephenson was united in marriage to Miss Effie Rawlins, of Brandenburg, Ky., and to their union has been born one son, Julian, born Oct. 2, 1896.Pages 780-781 from volume III, part 2 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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