About Us
Museum Membership
Event Schedule
Museum Newsletters
Museum Displays


Lorton Family

James Lorton was born in Roodhouse, Illinois, Feburary 3, 1860; his sister was born in 1861; and his brother, William, was born May 18, 1862.
Their father James Lorton died in April 1862. The widow married Henry Kincade in 1864 and they had three children.
The family came from Roodhouse, Illinois, in 1873 to Port­land, Sumner County, Kansas. The family then consisted of the parents and five children.
In 1876, James came to Winfield to attend high school. In order to do that, he had to make his own way. He found work in the home of J. C. McMullen, a partner in the Winfield Bank, first bank organized in Cowley County. and later worked in his bank.
In spite of many hindrances he remained in school, completing his course with the first class to graduate from the Winfield High School. This class was graduated in 1880 with two members. Upon completion of his high school course he went to St. Louis where he entered a business college to take a course in banking. He returned to Winfield in the early spring of 1881 and entered the Winfield Bank as bookkeeper.
He purchased a minority interest in the bank in 1891 and was appointed assistant cashier. He was cashier in 1893.
On January 1, 1911, James Lorton and H. E. Kibbe, who also was associated with the bank, purchased the stock of W. E. Otis, who was retiring as President. Mr. Lorton was elected president and Mr. Kibbe cashier. Mr. Lorton remained president for 32 years.
September 9, 1911, James Lorton was married to Miss Estelle Fuller, daughter of J. C. Fuller, first president of the early-day Winfield bank, and pioneer builder of Winfield. They had no children. James Lorton died, after a lingering illness, in December 23, 1942, with his wife surviving him.  
Will Lorton followed his brother, in 1878, to Winfield to continue his education. He also lived in the J. C. McMullen home until he married Alice Carson (sister of Tommy Carson) in December 1882. After their marriage they lived on a farm near Wilmot until returning to Winfield the fall of 1895. In 1896 he opened a real estate and insurance agency. Mrs. Lorton died June 6, 1935, and in September 1936 he was married to Mrs May Wright, who died in December 1945. He was a member of the First Baptist Church since 1896. They had three children, two daughters, Winifred of Washington, D. C., and Mrs Alan Watrous of Wichita, and one son, Hugh Lorton of Winfield.

Cowley County Historical Society Museum