Willis Arnold, proprietor of a sawmill at Kendrick, is a native of Ohio, his birth having occurred in Kenton, that state, April 29, 1862. His father, Samuel Arnold, was born in Trumbull County, Ohio, and after the inauguration of the civil war entered the service of the Union. He was wounded and held as a prisoner in Andersonville, and after great suffering he died from the effects of his wounds in 1866.
Our subject was born when his father was at the front and was thus deprived of his care at a very early age. He was educated at Big Rapids, Michigan, and began to earn his own living when fifteen years of age. From that time he has been dependent upon his own exertions, and is therefore deserving of great credit for the success which he has achieved in life. He learned the carpenter’s trade, which he followed in northern Michigan for some time, and in 1880 he removed to Dakota. His sojourn in the latter state was followed by a period of residence in Montana, where he was engaged in the manufacture of lumber and in contract work. About the time of the establishment of Kendrick he came here, and in 1897 erected the sawmill which he has since operated. The yellow pine logs for the mill are procured six miles above the town and floated down the river to the mill, where they are converted into lumber, cut in sizes to meet the wishes of his patrons. The home demand consumes the entire output of the mill, and the business is regarded as one of the leading industrial concerns of this section of the county.
In 1896 Mr. Arnold was united in marriage to Mrs. Mary Potter, widow of G. E. Potter and a daughter of Judge John Fulkerson, of Minnesota. They have three children: Ralph. John and Ruth. Mr. Arnold has erected a good residence in Kendrick, and he and his family enjoy the esteem of all who know them. In politics he is a Republican, and he has made a good record as a businessman and citizen, being at all times reliable and upright.