The later years of Baumbach
(Editor's note: This is the third in a three-part series of articles about Wadena founder W.R. Baumbach.) In 1910, the Medford (Ore.) Mail Tribune reported that W. R. Baumbach, James Campbell Jr. and associates had applied for a charter to establ...
(Editor's note: This is the third in a three-part series of articles about Wadena founder W.R. Baumbach.)
In 1910, the Medford (Ore.) Mail Tribune reported that W. R. Baumbach, James Campbell Jr. and associates had applied for a charter to establish a state bank in nearby Woodville. This move was in line with the intentions of the Wadena gentlemen to establish a chain of banks in the Medford area. It further stated that Baumbach and Campbell were engaged in the farm loan and real estate business in Medford and their capital and business experience will be applied in various directions around Medford, which is one of the thriving cities in the rich Rogue River valley.
In 1911, it was announced that W.R. Baumbach and James Campbell, associated in the mortgage loan and banking business in Medford, would dissolve their partnership on Jan. 1. Baumbach may take a trip to Florida in search of investments and business openings. Campbell retired because of failing health.
In 1922, the Pioneer Journal announced the return of W. R. Baumbach from Ardmore, Okla., where he had been in the lease game in the oil business for a number of years. It further stated that during his years in that business he had been very successful and accumulated a small fortune. However that year during a visit and checkup at the Mayo Clinic, the physicians advised him that he was ineligible for an active life, and after a brief visit with family and friends at Wadena and Lake Blanche they removed to Southern California to live.
In a Pioneer Journal article on August 8, 1925: "W. R. Baumbach, former prominent Wadena resident suffered a collapse last Friday at his home in Los Angeles, Calif. He was watering his lawn when he collapsed and he struck his head against the cement curb, cutting a deep gash and causing a severe bruise. It is not believed that the skull was fractured, but he bled profusely from the wound. He was unconscious when carried into the home, but partially recovered within a short time and at last reports was resting easily.
"This news came in a telegram from R. L. Baumbach which reached relatives here early Saturday morning. It is believed that Mr. Baumbach suffered a heart attack. He has been in his usual good health lately and his collapse was probably due to over exertion and the effects of the heat. Mr. Baumbach is 76 years of age."
The Pioneer Journal of Oct. 5, 1933 announced the death of W. R. Baumbach at his Los Angeles home on Sept. 25 with services held in a crematorium in that city. The ashes are to be taken to Wadena for burial.
"He is survived by his wife Hannah together with three sisters, Mrs. Ida Weltstein, Leesburg, Florida, Mrs. Emma Borsby, Geneva, Nebraska, Mrs. Tillie Hisle, Hammond, Indiana and a brother A. M. Baumbach, Wadena. Two granddaughters, Mrs. Letha Gage, Arcadia, Wisconsin and Mrs. Grace Oliver, Duluth."
As Phyllis Dower Davis, niece of W. R. Baumbach, once said, her grandfather A. M. Baumbach was a mechanic but Uncle Will (W. R.) was a financial genius. Maybe it takes both kinds to make a town successful.