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Homer E. Buck (1859-1936)
Native on Bath, MI, moved to Bay City in 1871.

1892 History. Added April 2008.

History of Bay County, Michigan, Augustus H. Gansser, 1905


Homer E. Buck, born at Bath, Michigan, October 4, 1859, is to-day a living example of the possibilities before the enterprising and aggressive youth of our great country. Attracted by the booming lumber town, the Buck family moved here in 1871, but all their bright prospects were soon blasted by the death of the father. A mother and sister alone remained to mourn with Homer. With the decision of character that has since contributed so much to his success in life, the little lad at once determined to provide for the loved ones at home. He became a newsboy, later circulation manager for the Detroit News, earning $30 to $35 per month, and worked evenings, while attending school regularly.

When 16 years old Mr. Buck entered the employ of L. F. Miller & Company, where in five years he thoroughly mastered the wholesale grocery trade, and when scarcely of age went into business for himself. With Joseph Leighton he conducted for 14 years a most prosperous and successful commission store, which the latter is still maintaining.

Mr. Buck, after selling out, entered a new field by opening offices in the Shearer Block, where he has since enjoyed a constantly increasing business, as merchandise broker, importer's and manufacturer's agent, and car-lot shipper. This business calls him frequently out of the city, but that has never appeared to interfere with the manifold public enterprises and public duties with which he has in late years become associated. He is at present president of the E. P. Roe Company, of Bad Axe, Michigan; is a director in the Argentuil Gold Mining Company, with properties located on Jackfish Bay, Canada, and stockholder in a number of thriving local business institutions. He was one of the organizers and is a director of Bay City's beautiful city of the dead, -- Elm Lawn Cemetery. The first sugar beet seed brought into Bay County was secured by Mr. Buck from Germany for Hon. Nathan B. Bradley, C. B. Chatfield, and their co-laborers.

Despite the constantly growing demands of his varied business interests, his prodigious energy, earnest devotion to the welfare of his home city and its higher institutions and keen interest in every public enterprise, have for many years carried him into every movement for the development and advancement of Bay County. He was instrumental in bring here the first chicory factory, introduced to the markets of the county some of the first beet sugar manufactured in Bay City, contributed to the development of the coal mining industry locally, and through his years of devoted work on the executive committee of the Board of Trade has been actively identified with every new enterprise secured through that organization.

For years Mr. Buck has been an ardent advocate of a new railway line through the “Thumb” of Michigan, thus opening for Bay City's trade the rich farming country lying to the east. On May 1, 1905, with Hon. Nathan B. Bradley, Hon. George A. Prescott, of Tawas (Secretary of State, 1905-06), W. C. Pennoyer, Edgar B. Foss and Hon. Chester L. Collins, he has succeeded in getting a good franchise for entering Port Huron with their proposed new road., -- the Bay City & Port Huron Railroad. The line has been surveyed, has excellent terminals, good freight prospects in the products of farm and coal mine, touches a thickly settled urban district and will fill a long left want for this part of Michigan.

Mr. Buck labored for years to bring about the consolidation of the Bay Cities, and when in 1905 the union seemed hopelessly lost he it was who with Hon. Spencer O. Fisher, W. D. Young and others, carried the vital matter before Governor Fred M. Warner and won out. Already some of the strongest opponents to this union of the sister cities are acknowledging the benefits following consolidation, and the years to come will surely place the seal of unqualified approval upon the union, brought about in the last analysis by a handful of public-spirited business men.

Mr. Buck has always found time from his business affairs for the plain duties of good citizenship. An ardent Republican, he cast his first vote for James G. Blaine in 1884, and his party service has since been continuous. For 15 years he served on his ward committee, for six years he was treasurer of the Republican County Committee, being its chairman in 1900-02, proving there as ever an aggressive, energetic organizer. He has contributed much to the success of his party and its standard bearers in Bay County during more than 20 years of active party service. He has never aspired to any public office, although his many friends would have been delighted to see him the first mayor of Greater Bay City. In the State Convention at Grand Rapids in June, 1904, he was honored by being nominated as one of the Michigan electors at large, being elected on the Republican ticket in November, 1904, by the sweeping endorsement accorded President Theodore Roosevelt by the electors of the State, who organized the party under the oaks at Jackson half a century ago. Mr. Buck represented Bay County at the semi-centennial celebration in July, 1904. He has served five years on the Board of Water Works; five years on the Board of Fire Commissioners, two years of which he was president, and at present represents the Fifth Ward on the Board of Education, a member of some of its most important committees. He is an active member and deacon of the First Presbyterian Church, taking an active part in the building of the present magnificent house of worship, as well as in the recent effort, which resulted in wiping out the last indebtedness on this church. He is a Scottish Rite Mason, being a member of Bay City Lodge, No. 129, F. & A. M.; Blanchard Chapter, No. 59, R. A. M.; and Bay City Council, No. 53, R. & S. M., all of Bay City; and Moslem Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S., of Detroit. His is also an honorary member of the Peninsular Military Company, a member of the Modern Archers of America and of the Knights of the Loyal Guard.

Mr. Buck was married on April 23, 1884, to Margaret Lewis, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. D. M. Lewis, two of Bay County's oldest and most esteemed pioneers. Seven children has blessed their home: Homer Clifford; Mary A.; David Justice; Alma Blanche; Harold Lewis; Edna Marguerite and Helen Esther. Mrs. Buck is a true type of American womanhood, a loving, dutiful wife and mother, charitable to a degree, and beloved and respected by the community.

The family on the paternal side trade their ancestry back to 640 in Holland, the head of this branch going to England in 1500, a later sprig to Boston in 1647, and to New Amsterdam shortly after. The family is very prolific, members being now found all over the country, being especially noted for the number of civil engineers and surveyors it has produced.

Additional Notes:

  • 1876:
    - Served on the Board of Water Commissioners, Bay City.
  • 1885: Michigan Births - Bay City.
    - Homer C. Buck born Jul. 24., son of Homer and Maggie Buck.
  • 1886: Michigan Births - Bay City.
    - Mamie Buck born Jul. 4, daughter of Homer and Maggie Buck.
  • 1887: Michigan Births - Bay City.
    - David Buck born Oct. 26, son of Homer E. and Maggie Buck.
  • 1893: Michigan Births - Bay City.
    - Harold Lewis Buck, born Oct. 30, son of Homer E. and Maggie Buck.
  • 1896 Directory:
    - Buck, Homer E, Company Buck, Leighton & Co., resides at 708 Bowery.
    - Buck, Leighton & Company (Homer E. Buck, Joseph Leighton, Orrin Bump) cor 3d & Saginaw sts.
  • 1910, Jan. 5:
    - Superior Life, Bay City, Mich. - In process of organizing on legal reserve basis: capital, $100,000. Officers chosen: President, Gustavus Hine; first vice president, J. F. Bromfield; second vice president, M I. Bats; treasurer, Homer E. Buck; secretary and general manager, I. Boothman Brown. (The Insurance Press)
  • 1914:
    -Owned 640 shares of Saginaw-Valley Sugar Co., Saginaw, MI.
  • 1917:
    - Home E. Buck appointed Bay County member of the board of control of the Michigan State Training School for Women.
  • 1931: Directory:
    - Buck, Homer E., postmaster, resides with wife Bertha E., at 820 N. Johnson, Bay City.
  • 1936: Hyatt Ewald Funeral Home.
    - Home E. Buck died Nov. 24.
Related Pages/Notes

Homer E. Buck

Related Pages:
Bradley, Nathan B.
Bump, Orrin
Fisher, Spencer O.
Young, Walter D.
People Referenced
Bats, M.L.
Blaine, James G.
Bradley, Nathan B.
Bromfield, J.F.
Brown, I. Boothman
Buck, Alma B. (dau.)
Buck, David J. (son)
Buck, Edna M. (dau.)
Buck, Harold L. (son)
Buck, Helen E. (dau.)
Buck, Homer C. (son)
Buck, Homer E. (subject)
Buck, Mary A. (dau.)
Bump, Orin
Chatfield, C.B.
Collins, Chester L.
Fisher, Spencer O.
Foss, Edgar B.
Hine, Gustavus
Leighton, Joseph
Lewis, D.M.
Lewis, Margaret (wife)
Miller, L.F.
Prescott, Geo. A.
Roe, E.P.
Roosevelt, Theo. Pres.
Warner, Fred M. Gov.
Young, W.D.
Subjects Referenced
Argentuil Gold Mining Co.
Bad Axe, MI
Bath, MI
Bay City, MI
Bay City & Port Huron RR
Bay Co., MI
Bd., Education
Bd., Fire Commissioners
Bd., Water Works
Boston, MA.
Buck, Leighton & Co.
Detroit, MI
Elm Lawn Cemetery
E.P. Roe & Co.
First Presbyterian Ch.
Grand Rapids, MI
Jackfish Bay, Can.
Jackson, MI
L.F. Miller & Co.
Saginaw, MI
Shearer block
Superior Life Ins.
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.