Notable Kansas Citians from the Past

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Walton H. Holmes

Walton H. Holmes, one of the best known men in Kansas City, was the second child of Nehemiah and Mary Holmes and was born in 1861 in Independence, Missouri.  His father was the founder, of the street railway system of Kansas City, and during his vacations from the local high school and the Christian Brothers' College in St. Louis, the young Walton leaned the business, beginning at the bottom.

     At the age of sixteen he engaged in the business of contractor and builder on a large scale and when seventeen years old was elected vice-president of the Kansas City and Westport Horse Railway Company, and upon attaining his majority was elected president.  In 1886 he introduced the cable system, and was the first president in the United States to introduce the overhead trolley electric system.  It was chiefly through his instrumentality that the street car line of the city were consolidated, after which he was made vice-president and general manager, and in 1898 was elected president.  In 1902 Mr. Holmes severed his connection with the Metropolitan, and is now engaged in looking after his own personal interests.

     In 1884, he was married to Miss Fleecie Phillips, daughter of Dr. Phillips, an eminent surgeon of Austin, Tex., and a niece of U. S. District Judge John F. Phillips.  They have one son, Walton  H., Jr.
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