Black Hills Knowledge Netowork

Chauncey Lynch Wood
Chauncey Lynch Wood

Chauncey Lynch Wood

Born:  April 20, 1851

Died:  January 14, 1911

Mayoral Dates:  1894-1896, 1899-1900 & 1908-1910

Mayoral Quip

Chauncey L. Wood traveled to the Black Hills in April 1878 to join schoolmate J.W. Nowlin.  Together, they developed one of the most extensive law practices in the Black Hills under the name of "Nowlin & Wood."  He was a conspicuous figure in the political history of the Black Hills.  He was a leader in the Democratic Party of Dakota.  He was a profound lawyer and a powerful and eloquent pleader.  Because of his knowledge of constitutional law, he was selected as one of the delegates to represent the Black Hills at the Constitutional Convention held in Sioux Falls on July 4, 1889.  At this convention, he helped frame a constitution for the new state of South Dakota.  Chauncey L. Wood was three-time mayor of Rapid City.

Biography

Chauncey Lynch Wood was born in Jones County, Iowa, April 20, 1851.  There were six children in the family and his father died when he was nine years old.  He attended college at Cornell College in Iowa and studied for the bar at Iowa State University.  After a brief career as a school teacher, Wood traveled to the Black Hills in April 1878 to join school mate J.W. Nowlin.  Nowlin and Wood eventually developed one of the most extensive law practices in the Black Hills under the name of 'Nowlin & Wood'. 

In 1886, he married Ruth Robinson.  Born to this union were two sons, Buell and Ben.  For twenty years, Chauncey L. Wood had been a conspicuous figure in the political history of the Black Hills.  He was a leader in the Democratic Party of Dakota.  He was a profound lawyer, a powerful and eloquent pleader, and his name stood high among the leading attorneys of the state.  Because of his knowledge of constitutional law, he was selected as one of the delegates to represent the Black Hills at the Constitutional Convention held in Sioux Falls on July 4, 1889.  At this convention, he helped frame a constitution for the new state of South Dakota, which was admitted to the union. 

In 1888, Ruth died and, on August 7, 1894, he married Mrs. Bessie Frank.  In 1906, Bessie's mother moved to Seattle, Washington, and Bessie went out there to visit her and stayed there most of the time.  Chauncey would visit them often.  In late December 1910, he went to Seattle, and on January 14, 1911, he died.   

Chauncey L. Wood was three-time mayor of Rapid City.

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