Robert Y. Berry (1879 – )

” In the period of early western development stock raising constituted the source of the people’s wealth, but great changes have come since that day and Colorado and other western districts have in more recent years owed their development in great measure to the utilization of the rich mineral resources of this part of the country, and now there has come into public recognition the fact that in many districts of the west are great oil fields which are being profitably operated, leading in turn to the development of many important business interests.  It is along this line that Robert Y. Berry is putting forth earnest effort as manager of Sinclair Refining Company and his wise direction is leading to the substantial development of the interests, under his control.  He was born in Versailles, Kentucky, March 9, 1879, a son of R.Y. and Sally (Ware) Berry, both of whom were natives of Kentucky.  The father was well known in the milling business in that state and resided at Versailles to the time of his death, being valued and representative business man of that locality.  The grandfathers of Robert Y. Berry in both the paternal and maternal lines were soldiers of the Civil war, serving with officer’s rank.  R.Y. Berry, Sr., died in Kentucky in 1885 and is still survived by his widow, who yet makes her home in her native state.  In their family were four children.

Robert Y. Berry, of Denver, the youngest of the family, began his education in the public schools of Versailles at the usual age an won promotion as he mastered the various branches of learning until he became a high school pupil.  He made his initial step in the business world by entering the employ of the American Smelting & Refining Company, with which he was connected for a year.  In 1900 he became identified with the Standard Oil Company, and was its representative in Kansas City, Missouri, until 1910.  In the latter year he entered the service of the Washburn-Crosby Company of Joplin, Missouri, with which he continued for a year and then returned to the Standard Oil Company, which he represented at Fargo, North Dakota, for a year.  He was next manager for the Uncle Sam Oil Company at Wichita, Kansas, with which he remained for three years, and at the end of the that time he entered into business relations with the Cudahy Refining Company and was afterward with the Sinclair Oil Company.  Since coming to Denver in 1913 he has the active management of the interests of the Sinclair Refining Company in this city.  He has spacious and handsomely appointed offices in the Central Savings Bank building and is developing an extensive business in this connection.  His long experience in the oil trade had made him widely and favorably known and has brought to him a very thorough knowledge of everything having relation thereto.  His judgment is sound, his discrimination keen and his enterprise unfaltering and these qualities are proving salient features in the continued development of the business interests under his direction.

On the 23d of March, 1915, Mr. Berry was united in marriage to Miss Jean L. Briggs, of Kansas City, Missouri, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W.O. Briggs, of that place.  Mr. Berry voted with the democratic party and keeps well informed on the questions and issues of the day but does not seek office as a reward for his party allegiance.  He belongs to the Denver Civic an Commercial Association and to the Christian church, connections which indicate the nature of his interests and the rules which govern his conduct.  He is a fine man of splendid qualities and characteristics, commanding the goodwill and confidence of all who know him.”

Source:  The History of Colorado, by William Fiske Stone, Vol. 2, The S.J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1918, page 432


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