William Albert Paine

William Albert Paine was born on January 29, 1855 in Amesbury, Massachusetts. Early in his career he worked as a clerk at Blackstone Bank in Boston. He was employed there from 1873 until 1880. Formed a brokerage firm called Paine, Webber and Company in 1880 with partner Wallace G. Webber.

Married Ruth Felton Ward in 1887, had two sons and three daughters

In 1899 he partnered with John Stanton . Mr. Stanton was already well known in the Copper Country with his interest in the Stanton-Gay group which had controlling interest in the Atlantic, Central and Allouez mines. The Paine-Stanton group was formed in 1899 to develop the land between Ontonagon and Houghton. This group was incorporated as the Copper Range Railroad and the Copper Range Consolidated Company, with William Paine as President and John Stanton on the board. In 1901 this corporation controlled the Baltic and Trimountain mines, the Copper Range Railroad, 50% of the Champion mine and 60% of Michigan Smelting Company. In 1904 this group of companies mined 62 million pounds of copper, which accounted for 30% of the total output of Michigan's copper mines. C&H being the largest at 39%.

Mr. Paine played a key role in the development of the paternalistic communities of the South Range. He personally saw to the creation of hospitals, schools, stores, entertainment, land for churches, libraries. Most noted was the Sarah Sargent Paine Library, named after Williams mother, located in Painesdale. The milling community of Freda was named after one of the two Paine daughters.

William died in 1930.