Collins, McDonald Ravlin 'Rall' (November 9, 1868 - February 13, 1935)


DOUGLAS NATIONAL BANK, DIES FOLLOWING BRIEF ILLNESS Over Three Hundred Friends Pay Final Tribute To Beloved Business Leader at Services In Masonic Temple Friday Afternoon.

Douglas Enterprise - February 19, 1935

M.R. Collins, 66, president of the Douglas National Bank and one of the most prominent citizens of Douglas and Converse County, passed away at the Douglas Hospital Wednesday morning, February 13, after suffering ten days from a fractured left hip sustained when he fell while working in his front yard on Sunday, February 3.

Over 300 friends, both young and old, paid last respects to Collins Friday afternoon at 2:30 at the Masonic Temple, in one of the most impressive funerals ever held in Douglas. Members of Ashlar Masonic Lodge No. 10 were in charge of the services, with Rev. Judy Clayton delivering the funeral sermon, and burial was in the Douglas Park Cemetery.

McDonald Ravlin Collins was born at DeSota, Ia., Nov. 9, 1868, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Albert Collins. His mother died when he was a small child. For eight years the family lived in Iowa, and then moved to Aurora, Ill., where they made their home for seven years, and where Collins received his first education.

The next move was a response to the call of the West, and the family went from Illinois to North Loup, Nebr., and lived there for about a year. In 1886, Rall, as he was popularly known, and his father went to Lusk, where Collins started his long and successful business career.

He worked for his uncle, Dennis Collins, in the old Lusk Hotel for a time, and then joined Nat Baker in the mercantile business. He bought this store, changing the name from Baker & Collins to Collins Commercial Co., and after several months Harry Snyder bought an interest and the name of the firm was changed to Collins-Snyder.

Following his experience in that business, Collins held a position as cashier of the Lusk Bank.

While living in Lusk he was married to Miss Florence Adele Jenks of that town. One child, Florence, was born to them. She is now Mrs. John Peterson of Sacramento, Calif. Mrs. Collins died when their daughter was 1 year old.

Collins was on the Board of County Commissioners in Converse County when the present counties of Niobrara and Converse were a single unit known as Converse County.

He moved to Douglas in 1905, becoming manager of the Douglas Mercantile Co., and later was connected with the first National Bank of Douglas for a short time. He also held an interest in the George Bolln Co., with Waldo Bolln, Otto Bolln, and Wilkie Collins.

In 1907 he organized the Douglas National Bank, and was elected its first president, capably filling that position until his untimely death.

Collins worked whole-heartedly and sincerely at the task of building up this community, and was largely responsible for encouraging many of the pioneer business enterprises to locate here.

A man of the highest integrity, he inspired and held the esteem and confidence of all who knew him. To him were entrusted many positions of responsibility and honor, and his advice was sought by many.

He had served the town of Douglas as mayor, and was a past president of the Wyoming Banker's Association. He was secretary of the first Wyoming State Fair, and the first secretary of the Good Roads Club, a former Douglas organization. Besides taking active parts in those organizations, he served on the school board of Converse County High School, and on that of District 17.

He was always a staunch booster and benefactor in the building and improving of roads in this community. On of his chief accomplishments was assisting in the establishment and routing of the Yellowstone Highway for publication in the Blue Book, a guide book of the old days, which was probably the most authentic information to tourists of that time.

Largely through his efforts the Fort Fetterman U.S. wood reserve on Box Elder Creek was deeded to Converse County by the government for park purposes.

Mr. Collins was a member of the Woodmen of the World, and a charter member of the Kiwanis Club. He was initiated into Ashlar lodge No. 10 on January 2, 1900, and from that time until his death he had been an active member of the Masonic order.

Collins was a thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason.

On July 31, 1916, he was married to Mrs. Anna Potter of Douglas, and they were known for their devotion to each other.

Left to mourn his passing are his widow, Mrs. Anna C. Collins; his daughter, Mrs. John Peterson of Sacramento, Calf.; two brothers, Wilkie Collins and Emery Collins of Van Nuys, Calif.; three stepdaughters, Mrs. Earl Bowman of San Jose, Calif.; Mrs. Louise Crandall and Mrs. C.R. Simons of San Francisco, Calif.; two stepsons, Edwin H. Potter and John E. Potter of Douglas.

The brethren of the Masonic lodge and an innumerable host of friends in this community, and many early-day stockmen and business men in and out of the state learned with regret of his passing, and extended their sympathy to the bereaved family.

Mrs. Peterson, Mrs. Crandall, Mrs. Simon, and Mrs. Bowman were here for the funeral services. Many of his old-time friends also were here to pay final tribute.

Many from Lusk, including Mr. and Mrs. Frank DeCastro, Al McFarlane, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Petz, Mr. and Mrs. W.C. Reed and family, Alfred Johnson, Chris Joss, Ed Arnold, and Mrs. J.B. Griffith; Mr. and Mrs. Frank Knittle and Otto Bolln of Casper and many other pioneer friends from nearby towns were in Douglas for the services. DeCastro was one of the first men in the state to become acquainted with Collins.

Honorary pallbearers were William Delahoyde, Chris Joss, A.A. Clough, Jacob Jenne, Henry Petz, W.C. Reed, J.C. Saul, L.B. Potter, and Henry Reese. Active pallbearers were J.Fred Jenne, J.R. Morton, Rhea Tillard, Henry Bolln, Ronald Swan, and Howard Esmay.


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