CASSIUS B. TOWNER
Cassius B. Towner, was born in Byron Center, Kent County, 6 Sep 1859. He received his early education in the public school at Byron Center, after which he attended Central High School in Grand Rapids, walking from Byron Center to Grand Rapids, and finished his education attending business college at Mendon, Michigan.
Upon completing his college course, he became affiliated with his father in the lumber business, known as S. S. Towner & Son. In 1871, they built a saw mill and became known as one of the largest producers of hard wood lumber in this part of the state, continuing in operation until May, 1920, when the last of the mills burned. In the year of 1880, they built a grist mill in Byron Center, which still stands (1957) and is now operated by the Byron Center Co-operative Association.
In the summer of 1904, they purchased the general store from S. S. McNitt, which later was enlarged and reorganized in 1905 as the C. B. Towner Co., Ltd., and which carried on a very prosperous business until sold to Eno. VanderZaag in 1921. Today it is known as the I.G.A. Store (1957).
In the year of 1904, he was elected to the state legislature from the second district, Kent County and served two terms, being elected the second term without opposition.
October 23, 1881, he married Julia B. Huff, of Byron, Shiawassee County, Michigan, who departed this life 27 Dec 1917. Five children were born to this union, four are living: Captain Wilfred S. Towner; Bob G. Towner of Byron Center; Fanny C. Cody of Los Angeles, California and N. Elma Pringle of Calumet City, Illinois.
On 22 Apr 1920, he married Margaret Lesley of Los Angeles, California, who survived him, also, a sister, Mildred C. Burwell, of Cadillac, Michigan. He is survived by nine grandchildren. Mr. Towner passed away 2 Dec 1931.
Created: 7 April 2014