Seth A. Morton

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Valerie & Tommy Crook
November 26, 1999

The History of West Virginia, Old and New
Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc.,
Chicago and New York, Volume III,
pg. 320

SETH A. MORTON. With the possible exception of honesty
and integrity, there is no other quality so in demand in the
business world of today as practicality. Energy, push, en-
terprise, courage and rapid and sure decision mark the men
who become the compelling forces in the upbuilding of the
trade and commerce of the country. Seth A. Morton, a
well-known lumberman of Sutton, has been so marked.
There has been no element of chance in the success which
he has achieved; on the contrary, it has been the inevitable
result of what he has put of himself into his energies. No
fortunate circumstances gave him any early advantage, for
he began his business career with only the endowments with
which nature had favored him, coupled with the sound
principles instilled in his home during his boyhood.

Mr. Morton was born in Clay County, West Virginia,
April 7, 1868, a son of Daniel and Charlotte (Roger) Mor-
ton. His father was also bora in Clay County, a son of
John T. Morton, the latter being a son of Thomas T. Morton,
who was a soldier during the Revolutionary war and the
War of 1812. After the close of the latter struggle he went
to Clay County, where he and his wife passed the rest of
their lives. His son, John T. Morton, was reared in Clay
County, where he married the widow of Samuel Holcomb and
became the father of six children, among them Daniel Mor-
ton. Daniel Morton was reared in Clay County, where he
was given only limited educational advantages, and as a
young man adopted the vocation of agriculture, which he
followed throughout his life. He was a republican in poli-
tics, although not an office seeker. Of his ten children the
following are living at this time: G. P., of Molino, Florida;
Seth A., of this review; Chloe, the wife of John D. Ramsey;
Moses S., of Harriman, Tennessee; Mary S., the wife of
W. J. Ramsey, and Esther, the wife of H. J. Walker. It
is interesting to note that of this family three of the Morton
daughters married three brothers of the Eamsey family,
while one of the Morton boys married one of the Ramsey

Seth A. Morton was reared on his father’s farm in Clay
County, where he was given his education in the district
schools, and until he reached the age of twenty-one years
was his father’s associate in the work of the home place.
While thus engaged he became interested in the lumber busi-
ness, which he finally entered on his own account and eventu-
ally established an office and yard at Sutton. Following his
marriage he lived for a time on the old home farm in Clay
County, where he divided his time between farming and
lumbering, subsequently moving to Webster County, where
he owned and operated a sawmill until 1918. He then dis-
posed of his interests in Webster County and moved to
Sutton, and has here built up a splendid business and placed
himself among the leading business men of the place.

In October, 1896, Mr. Morton was united in marriage
with Miss Hattie M. Ramsey, who was reared on a farm in
Clay County and was educated in the public schools, and
to this union there have been born four children: Mabel, the
wife of F. J. Howie; Mamie, the wife of W. A. Robinson;
and Marco O. and Olive, who are attending public school.
Mr. and Mrs. Morton have one grandchild: Elnora Robin-
son, born December 26, 1921. By a previous marriage Mr.
Morton had two children, of whom one is living, Fred &.,
of Webster County, West Virginia, a veteran of the World
war. In his political allegiance Mr. Morton is a democrat,
but has not cared for public office, his business interests
having been of sufficient importance and size to keep his
attention and energies occupied. He has some valuable
realty holdings in this region, which include 300 acres of
coal lands, as well as a modern home at Sutton and a dwel-
ling at Charleston.