S. W. WILKINSON. This prominent general merchant of Willow Springs, Missouri, was born in Alton, Illinois, January 6, 1856, son of Simon and Anna (Lea) Wilkinson, both natives of England. The parents came to the United States about 1850 and settled in the Prairie State, where the father followed farming until his death in 1859. The mother is now living in Missouri. Their family consisted of five children, and our subject is the only one now living. S. W. Wilkinson passed his early life in Missouri, whither his mother had moved before the war, and when he was about thirteen years of age began clerking in a store.
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In about 1883 he embarked in business for himself at Leesburgh, this State, continued this for one year, and then in 1884 came to Willow Springs. Here he engaged in general merchandising, and in 1890 he erected the large commercial house in which he now carries on business. This is one of the best business buildings in the city, 28×90, two stories in height and a basement. Mr. Wilkinson carries a stock of goods valued at from $6,000 to $7,000 and his trade extends over a wide scope of country. He employs two clerks, is doing a good business, and is a young, energetic business man. Mr. Wilkinson started for himself in a small way, but by industry and close attention to business has made a success of his calling. In politics he is a Republican and is prominent in the affairs of the city. He selected his wife in the person of Miss Phoebe Elizabeth Knight, and they have six children: Lillie, Charles S., William E., Ethel Ann, Bessie Jane and Mary Alice. Mr. Wilkinson and family reside on Third Street, this city, and have a handsome home. They are highly respected by all and are prominent citizens. Mr. Wilkinson has had an experience of twenty-five years in the mercantile business and is reliable and trustworthy. He is a director in the Citizens’ Bank of Willow Springs, is also city and school treasurer, and has held many prominent positions. He has ever been active in all enterprises to build up the city and is one of the most progressive men.