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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
George Albert Niles

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 734-735 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

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Since 1906 George Albert Niles has been actively connected with the banking business and is now president of the Oneida National Bank of Utica. He was born in Clinton, New York, on the 5th of September, 1867, and is the son of Chauncey I. Niles of Clinton, New York, and his wife, Sarah A. Niles.

G. Albert Niles received his education in the country schools in this county and the Best grammar school of Clinton. Until he was eighteen years of age he worked on the farm, with the exception of one year that he spent as a clerk for the Ontario & Western Railroad, being employed in the station at Clark Mills, New York. Mr. Niles came to Utica in 1886 and here his first position was that of bookkeeper for the old Utica Dairy Company, located on Lafayette street. He later worked as bookkeeper for W. T. Smith, who conducted a book store here and for J. M. & C. B. Crouse, wholesale grocers, in whose establishment he served as entry and bill clerk. In the years that followed Mr. Niles had a variety of experience as bookkeeper for different local concerns, eventually working up to the position of credit man and office manager for Crouse & Brandegee, a wholesale clothing firm, now known as Kincaid & Kimball. Eighteen years ago, in May, 1906, Mr. Niles entered the banking profession, for which all of his previous experience in bookkeeping and accounting had been excellent preparation. Taking up his duties in the Oneida National Bank as paying teller, he worked his way upward through the various departments of that institution until he reached the position of cashier. Later he was elected vice president, and in 1925 was made president. A man of natural business ability, he turned his intellectual powers to the study of the field of finance and banking with so determined an enthusiasm that he soon became an authority in his line, gaining a generous recognition from both the officers and directorate of his own institution and from the other bankers of this section. Mr. Niles has not confined his attention to this single field of endeavor, however, but has reached out into other lines of commercial enterprise. He is a director of the Associated Laundries of Utica and Syracuse, the Munson Mill Machinery Company and the Pratt-Chuck Company of Frankfort, New York, all of which have benefited materially by his financial support and sound business judgment.

Mr. Niles was married on February 3, 1892, to Miss Jennie E. Cotes, daughter of Charles J. Cotes. Mrs. Niles comes from an old Holland Patent family which has long been identified with the history and development of Oneida county. Mr. and Mrs. Niles have three children: Lois C., born July 9, 1899; Mabel S., born April 6, 1902; and Chauncey A., born July 13, 1906. The religious faith of the family is indicated by their connection with the Tabernacle Baptist church, in which Mr. Niles is now serving as a member of the board of deacons. He is identified socially with the Fort Schuyler Club and as a man interested in furthering the general welfare is active in the affairs of the Utica Rotary Club, and is now acting as treasurer of that body. Mr. Niles has formed a large acquaintance in the city of his adoption and firmly established himself in the public regard as a business man and a citizen.

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