From 1859 to 1909, Nicholas D. Fratt was president of what grew from Racine County Bank into the First National Bank & Trust Co. of Racine. That evolved into Bank One by 1988. In 1916, Fratt donated two lots on his farm to the rural school district on which the first of three schools in West Racine was built.
Fratt operated a meat market after arriving here from New York in 1845 at the age of 20. In 1855, he bought a farm, which he called Sylvan Dell, in what is now West Racine. He lived on the farm until about 1894 when he moved into town and lived on College Avenue.
He became a leader in education, agriculture and politics. He was a state senator in the 1860s and president of the State Agricultural Society. He also served on the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents. Locally, he served on the Taylor Orphanage Board and was active in the Masonic Order and the Odd Fellows. He died in 1910 in California but is buried in Mound Cemetery.