Will B. Caton.
Will B. Caton, was one of the pioneer businessmen of Winfield.
Mr. Caton was born in Delaware, Ohio. He served his country in the Civil war for nearly four years as a bugler in the Second Missouri Cavalry, Merrill’s Horse, enlisting before he was fourteen years old.
Following the war, in the hard times of the reconstruction period, which Mr. Caton insisted were worse than the 1933 depression, he ended a campaign of walking the streets looking for work by binding himself out as an apprentice to a marble cutter in Booneville, Missouri, at eight dollars a month for three years to learn the trade.
In 1869 Mr. Caton was married to Miss Julia Blankenmeister. He opened a marble business in Sedalia, Missouri, which he conducted successfully for several years and then sold out and came to Kansas
He came to Winfield in 1879 and entered the grocery business. He then founded the Caton Marble works in 1880 and operated it until his retirement in 1920, associating for the last 25 years of that period with his son, Harry A. Caton, who continued the business.
Mrs. Caton taught in the Winfield public schools in 1880 and served a term as county superintendent of schools in 1889-90.
In 1889 the Hackney block, one of the largest and finest buildings in Winfield, was partly destroyed by fire and Mr. Caton purchased it. He rebuilt it and it became the Caton block. This block was torn down later and became Albertson’s and then Wheeler’s Grocery store parking lot.
Mr. and Mrs. Caton had four children: Mrs. Lottie Caton Abbott, Louis M. Caton, proprietor of the Caton dairy south of town, Mrs. Frank Root and Harry A. Caton.