Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p., [155] leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.

Arthur N. Rochester

ARTHUR N. ROCHESTER. Because of thirty years of residence in Kansas Arthur N. Rochester is extremely loyal to his home state, and the net results of his experience and activities have made him one of the leading citizens of Tribune in Greeley County. He is cashier of the First State Bank of Tribune.

Mr. Rochester was born in Mason County, Illinois, June 9, 1879. His grandfather, Sidney S. Rochester, was a member of the family that founded the city of Rochester, New York. He himself was a native of New York and in the early days moved out to Mason County, Illinois, where he died about 1888. He was the father of seven sons, six of whom were soldiers of the Union Army during the Civil war. Among his children were the following: John L., William, George, Nathaniel, Benjamin F. and Mary, besides others.

Benjamin F. Rochester, father of Arthur N., was a pioneer of Scott County, Kansas, where he arrived in October, 1886. He had formerly lived in Ashland, Illinois, where he acquired considerable mercantile experience as an associate of John W. Pence. He came out to Kansas with Mr. Pence, who was father of the village in Scott County that bears his name. Benjamin Rochester entered three tracts of land at Pence, lived in the village two years, and was then elected probate judge of Scott County. He remained in that office two terms and subsequently served two terms as register of deeds and then was county attorney one term. He filled the office of county attorney with much ability, although he was not a regularly admitted lawyer. After this official experience he was engaged in the abstract and real estate business until his death in 1906, at the age of sixty. Judge Rochester was a man of practical education, had considerable gift as a speaker, and as a young man had taught school. He was always true to the principles of the republican party, was a Presbyterian, and in earlier years was active in lodge work at Scott City. He married Lois A. Bonney. Her father, George Bonney, was a Methodist minister and also a farmer and tobacco grower in Mason County, Illinois. Mrs. Benjamin Rochester is still living, a resident of Scott City. Her children were: E. Paul, of Pueblo, Colorado; Arthur N.; and Bonney S., of Colorado Springs.

Arthur N. Rochester was seven years old when his parents came to Kansas. He grew up in this stimulating atmosphere, and partly through his environments and partly by inheritance he acquired the splendid physique which he considers one of the chief factors in his success and general well being. He had the advantages of the public schools in Scott City. When he was about sixteen years old he became an employe of the Santa Fe Railway at Scott City, and while at the station learned telegraphy. On mastering this art he was appointed to different positions along the main lines, served as agent at Scott City, and did his last railroad work at Syracuse.

In 1905 Mr. Rochester resigned his position with the railroad to engage in banking at Tribune. He was one of the organizers of the First State Bank with Judge Lobdell and W. M. Glenn. The first officers were Judge Lobdell, president; Mr. Glenn, vice president; Mr. Rochester, cashier; and other directors were J. S. Simmons and C. A. Freeland, of Leoti. The bank has made a steady growth from the start, and has never missed an annual dividend. It was capitalized at $15,000, now has deposits above $100,000 and surplus and undivided profits of $25,000.

Though the bank and his private affairs furnish him abundance of employment for his energies, Mr. Rochester has not neglected a public spirited participation in the life of his community. For the past six years he has served as mayor of Tribune. His administration has counted for a good deal in the way of general civic improvement and material development. The town has laid down many blocks of high grade cement walks. Mr. Rochester is also president of the school board, and was one of the men instrumental in securing the erection of a new public school building. In politics he has been staunchly aligned with the republican party from the time he cast his first vote for President McKinley. He is now chairman of the Republican County Committee of Greeley County. He has also served as treasurer of the school board. Mr. Rochester is County Food Administrator, is secretary of the local Selective Service Board, is chairman of the County Liberty Loan drive and also chairman of the drive for War Saving Stamps. in Masonry he is a past master of Horace Lodge, was district deputy grand master two years, and is now a member of the finance committee of the Grand Lodge.

Mr. Rochester was married at Scott City March 19, 1901, to Miss Margaret Starr, daughter of J. C. and Wilhelmina (Mohme) Starr. Her father was born in Ohio of German parentage, and came to Kansas from Iowa. Mrs. Rochester's mother was a native of Germany. The Starr family consisted of a son and five daughters. Mr. and Mrs. Rochester have two children: Lois Wilhelmina and Arthur N., Jr.