Raymond as a town was organized in 1871, with R. M. Van Doren as president of the board, E. A. Hanna as clerk, and W. P. Carter as treasurer. The town was laid out by Ishmael McGowan and Nimrod McElroy in 1870, at the time of the building of the Wabash Railroad. The surveys were made by a man named Bass for the railroad, and the town followed the lines of the road in the plats subsequently made. James Sanders is said to have erected the first residence in the village, followed by Thomas Fahey with the second. The first business house was built by David Hoffman, who rented it to R. M. Van Doren and Van Evor, who opened and conducted a general store in it. In the fall of 1870, Van Doren and Van Ever built a warehouse and handled the grain for farmers who had found out the value of the rich soil for wheat and corn raising. In the spring of 1871 Mr. Charles Davis built the second store building, in which he carried on a mercantile business, selling some four years later to W. P. Carter. In the fall of 1871, the third store building was erected by Parrott & Scott, and they opened a store therein. Others followed, and A. W. Marshall and Scott & Nevins were engaged in the mercantile business during the years following. The first brick building was erected by John O’Bannon for mercantile purposes in 1876. A. I Icnu built another during that year. D. J. Parrott built a large elevator in 1874 and another was built in 1880 by E. R. Carter. During this building period of business houses, residences were also being erected, permanent homes were established and professional men of various kinds located here, among whom was Dr. Frank Hicks, who is said to have been the first physician. He was followed soon afterwards by Dr. Ira Barton and Dr. P. J. Hermon, and later by Drs. Easley, Wheeler, and Blevins. William Develin was the first blacksmith, his shop being put up in 1871. W. H. Pepper built a second one a little later during the same year. In 1875 Montgomery Range put up a steam flouring mill, and in 1880 George H. Hoover built a second mil1. A hotel was erected in 1872 by John Brusaw who sold it a little later to James Sanders. Sanders still later sold it to Thomas J. Kessinger. Another hotel was built in 1875 by B. R. Hubbard, who sold it to Mrs. Pollard who operated it till in 1881 when it was destroyed by fire.
RAYMOND OF TODAY
The business condition today is as follows: Two dry goods stores, five grocery stores, two hardware stores, three restaurants, three clothing stores, two jewelry stores, one drug store, one furniture store, two livery barns, two grain elevators, one hotel, one lumber yard, two poultry houses, two blacksmith shops, one tile factory, two implement stores, one gate factory, one garage, three barber shops, one shoe store, one harness shop, two banks, and one electric light plant. The city has a population of about 1,000, and the enrollment of the public schools is about 250. The number of teachers employed is eight, and C. W. Yerkes is the present principa1. The present mayor of the town is A. M. Jones. The trustees arc Georiie J. Back, George Hartstlck, George Miller, George Crabtree, J. L. Mitts and J. L. Doyle. The personnel of the two banks is as follows: First National, Cyrus Fitzgerald, president; John H. Miller, vice-president; J. E. McDavid, cashier, and C. W. McAughton, assistant cashier. The Farmers & Merchants Bank has just reorganized as the Raymond State Bank with a capital of $25,000 and a surplus of $5,000, with W. L. Seymour as president and Mr. O’Neil as cashier.
Taken from: Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of Montgomery County - by A. T. Strange 1918