information taken from Heritage of Bancroft: 1884 - 1984
A family instrumental in Bancroft’s early development was the Ransom brothers: George H. and Charles A. Ransom. They came from New York in 1879 and in the fall of 1880, they purchased the first lot in Bancroft and set about establishing a lumber yard business. The first load of lumber was obtained from Oakland. Their office, known as the Ransom Bros., was built in August 1880 and was the first business house in Bancroft. It wasn’t long before the brothers began to expand their business interests with George H. purchasing an implement store along with J.E.L. Carey sometime after 1880. Implements featured were Moline wagons, John Deere and Eagle plows and Standard & McCormick reapers and mowers. These two men also became postmasters for the town of Bancroft. G.H. Ransom was appointed first with Mr. Carey succeeding him in that position but with another administration in the U.S. government, Mr. G.H. Ransom was once more appointed postmaster. In 1884 C.A. Ransom was appointed as trustee for the village of Bancroft by the County Commissioners. He also served as its chairman in 1885.
Charles, George and William Ransom were active in the Masonic lodge being three of Bancroft Lodge #145 AF & AM twelve charter members. They also served in the various offices of the organization throughout the years.
In 1880 a Mr. Giles P. Ransom came to Bancroft by way of New York and Iowa. He established the first furniture store in Bancroft in 1881 having learned his trade of cabinet making while still living in New York at the young age of sixteen.
Another business man in Bancroft was William H. Ransom. An entry in an early Bancroft directory mentions a Bassinger & Ransom hardware on Main Street—possibly this was William’s business venture.