Excelsior Springs Museum & Archives

William Stone Woods

1840 William Stone Woods was born in Columbia, Missouri, on November 1, 1840, the son of James Harris Woods and Martha Jane Stone. He was one of five children. Orphaned at an early age, he was raised by his grandparents.
1861 After a common school education, he entered the Missouri State University and graduated in 1861.
He at once became a student at the St. Louis Medical College, and after completing a course located as a physician in Middle Grove, Missouri. He practiced medicine until 1867
1867 Entered the mercantile business in Paris, Missouri.
1869 Established the Rocheport Savings Bank in Rocheport, Missouri.
From that time on, he began the ascent to become one of the post powerful financiers in Missouri.
1866 Married Albine M. McBride on July 10, 1866. They had one daughter, Julia.
1880 Moved to Kansas City and became a member of the wholesale dry goods firm of Grimes, Woods, La Force & Co.
1882 Acquired a controlliing interest in the Kansas City Savings Association. He became president and reorganized the failiing financ it into the Bank of Commerce in 1882
1902 Acquired controlling interest in the Clay County State Bank, located then at the corner of Broadway and Marietta. (A new bank located at 101 E. Broadway was completed in 1906 - the current home of the Excelsior Springs Museum and Archives)
1903 By 1903, Woods, Chandler and other partners controlled 18 banks ranging from Humboldt, Kansas, in the east to Clayton, New Mexico, in the southwest. These included banks in Oklahoma Territory and Texas. Ultimately, Chandler brought other of Wood's nephews into the Wichita-based banking empire.
early 1900's Bequeathed $35,000 for a new church building, now known as Woods Memorial Christian Church
1917 Died on July 5, 1917, at the Elms Hotel in Excelsior Springs, Mo. He left an estate estimated to be worth $5 million, approximately 10 percent of which went to William Woods College.


Williams Woods University website

Men Who Made Kansas City



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Last Updated 9/22/2014

Excelsior Springs Museum & Archives © 2014

Last Updated 2/21/2009