Robert J. Plate

Robert J. Plate, secretary and treasurer of The
Deisel-Wemmer Company, extensive cigar manufacturers, with headquarters
and plant located at Lima, is not only prominently identified with this
immense business enterprise, but is interested in other Lima concerns of
magnitude.  Mr. Plate was born in 1868 at Miamisburg, Montgomery County,
Ohio, and is a son of T. F. and Hannah (Karr) Plate.
       The father of Mr. Plate was also a native of Montgomery County,
Ohio, but his mother came from new Jersey. They have been residents of
Lima for some four years.
        In the year 1886 Robert J. Plate came to Lima and lived with his
uncle, Henry C. Heckerman, who conducted a confectionery business.  The
young man assisted his uncle for several years and during this time he
took a commercial course in the Lima Business College, attending the
night sessions.  Graduating from this institution, he accepted a
position in the office of J. A. Chapin, architect, and from there he
went into local railroad offices.  In all the positions he filled he
gained the approbation of his employers and in this way attracted the
attention of the then Deisel-Wemmer Company, whose members have been
noted, in building up their great business, for surrounding themselves
with a most capable and reliable force of assistants.  In 1892, when the
company required the services of a competent book-keeper, the offer was
made to Mr. Plate and was accepted.  Shortly afterward he came into a
still closer business relations, taking over the credit department also,
and in 1902, when the business was incorporated, he was elected
secretary and treasurer of the corporation, his brother, C.B. Plate,
succeeding to the position of head bookkeeper.
          Mr. Plate was married in December, 1902, to Berenice M.
Willaman, who is a daughter of Lee J. Willaman.  Mrs. Plate is an
accomplished lady, formerly a teacher in the Lima public schools.
          For a number of years Mr. Plate has been actively identified
with the work of Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church and for three years
was superintendent of the Sunday-school.  He has long been deeply
interested in the work of the Young Men's Christian Association and has
been a member of its working force, serving eight years as treasurer,
two years as chairman of the finance committee and is still an active
member of its directing board.  Mr. Plate is a member of the Lima
Business Men's Progressive Association and is very loyal to Lima and her
interests.