Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The
Big Bend Country, embracing Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties,
State of Washington", published by Western Historical Publishing
HON. JOHN RAYMER. In 1890, John Raymer came to Reardan and engaged in partnership with O. A. Menger in the hardware business, theirs being the first hardware store in the town. Four years later he purchased the interest of his partner, since which time he has been in business alone. In 1901 he built his present large brick store building, also three warehouses, and the following year added a line of furniture to his hardware business, his being the only furniture store in Reardan. He is a stockholder, director and vice-president of the Exchange Bank of Reardan, and is one of the wealthiest men of the town, a fact of which he might well be proud, coming as he did to the county almost without a dollar.
Born in Calhoun county, Michigan, June 15, 1856, he was the son of Peter and Mercy (Bates) Raymer, both natives of New York. They came to Michigan in an early day when the Indians were so numerous that the tilling of the land was a most hazardous occupation. Mr. Raymer has a brother and a sister still in Michigan, Charles Raymer and Mrs. Estella Telfer.
At the age of fifteen he left home to try his fortunes in the lumbering districts of Michigan. He worked here for one company seven years, the last four years in the capacity of foreman. In 1884 he came to Seattle, thence to Vancouver Island, and from there to Spokane. In December, 1885, he came to Davenport, and engaged in breaking raw sod. Later he engaged in lumbering north of Davenport, and in the fall of 1888 he bought a half interest in a saw-mill which he removed to Mondovi. He sold this business in 1890 when he engaged in his present occupation.
In the fall of 1900 he was elected to the House of Representatives from his county, holding the office one term, and ever since the town of Reardan was incorporated he has served on the city council. He has ever been a liberal subscriber to all enterprises and a generous supporter of everything having a tendency to develop his town, and country. He is an active member of the I. O. O. F., of which he is a past grand.
May 4, 1892, John Raymer was married to Hattie Latham, a native of Canada, and three children, Norman, John C., and Nelson, are the issue of this marriage.