The successful career of Marcus Asbury Means, of Genesee, is an illustration of the trite saying that brains and perseverance will make their way against all obstacles. Yet it is the multiplication of this illustration in all parts of our country that makes America one of the great powers of the earth. Mr. Means may be said to have been a child of war. He was born at Seabrook, Illinois, October 16, 1862, while his father was fighting for the preservation of the Union on southern battlefields, a service in which he yielded up his life in defense of his country. Mr. Means is of Scotch-English ancestry. His grandfather, Collin Means, from England, settled in Virginia and was the progenitor of the family in the United States. He removed to McLean County, Illinois, in 1829, and his son, Joseph Kefer Means, was born in Virginia and reared in Illinois, a good combination for the promotion of patriotism. Joseph K. Means married Matilda Rankin, also of Scotch-English descent. When the civil war came he was well established in life and had an interesting family. He enlisted in Company F, One Hundred and Sixteenth Illinois Volunteers, September 6, 1862, and he died, of a disease contracted in the service, at Walnut Hill, Mississippi, January 15, 1863. It is indeed glorious for a man to die for the land he loves, but the mourning of those he leaves behind is long, and often without much comfort. Alta, one of Mr. Means’ sisters, is the wife of W. L. Brown, a talented lawyer of Salt Lake City, Utah. Marcus Asbury Means is the only survivor of his immediate family.
Mr. Means was educated at Normal, Illinois, and in 1878 went to San Jose, California. He was employed there about two years and then went to Portland, Oregon. During the succeeding two years he was a member of a surveying party operating on the hne of the Northern Pacific Railroad. Coming to Idaho in 1895, he entered upon his successful mercantile career in a little store eighteen by thirty feet in size. It was a small beginning, but it foreshadowed important things. Since that time this store has been twice enlarged and Mr. Means occupies extensive warehouses and a branch store, the latter located at Oro Fino, Idaho. He handles all kinds of merchandise demanded in a first-class farming and mining community, and has a large and increasing trade. He has acquired considerable real estate.
Mr. Means was married September 1, 1889, to Catherine Hayes, daughter of James Hayes, of Lewiston, and a native of that city, and she has borne him a daughter, named Marguerite. Mrs. Means is prominent in all good work in her community. Mr. Means is a successful and public spirited man and is in every way deserving of the high esteem in which he is held by his fellow citizens.