Colusa County











WILLIAM T. WILKINS.  A man of excellent business ability and thrift, William T. Wilkins, of College City, is a worthy representative of the farming interests of Colusa county, and is held in high regard as a man and a citizen, his influence for good being felt throughout the community.  A son of William Wilkins, he was born in Groveland, Tazewell county, Ill., December 28, 1859.  He comes of honored Scotch ancestry, his paternal grandfather, Archibald Wilkins, having immigrated to this country from Scotland, locating as a farmer near Toledo, Ohio.


Born on the home farm, near Toledo, Ohio, William Wilkins grew to manhood in that place, from his boyhood days helping his father in his agricultural labors.  When ready to begin the struggle of life for himself he removed to Tazewell county, Ill., taking up land in Groveland, and there, with the early pioneers of that section, improving a homestead.  He also worked at the trade of a blacksmith, having a shop on his farm, and by means of well-directed toil improved a fine farm.  He is now, at the age of seventy-five years, living retired from active pursuits, enjoying the fruit of his labors.  He married Leah Hamilton, who was born in Virginia, sixty-nine years ago, and migrated with her father, John Hamilton, to Tazewell county, Ill.  Seven children were born of their union, namely:  Mrs. Mary Maloney, of Peoria, Ill.; Robert, a farmer, living near Prize, Cal.; William T., the subject of this sketch; Mrs. Jennie Worst, of Chicago; Mrs. Emma Woods, of Sacramento; Benjamin and Frank, both attorneys in Illinois.  The parents are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.


Brought up in Illinois, William T. Wilkins obtained his early education in the district schools, and while yet young worked with his father at farming, and also learned from him the blacksmith’s trade.  August 25, 1883, he located in Oakland, Cal., where he was associated in the undertaking business with his uncle, W. T. Hamilton, for nearly a year and a half.  In January, 1885, Mr. Wilkins decided to embark in agricultural pursuits, and in that month rented three hundred and twenty acres of land near Grimes, Colusa county.  The high water drowned him out the first year, but the second season he had a fine crop, raising twenty sacks of grain to the acre.  Continuing as a farmer, he met with encouraging success, and from time to time enlarged his operations, renting more land, and having a large outfit.  In 1893 Mr. Wilkins bought a ranch of three hundred and twenty acres on Grand Island, and carried it on with good results for six years.  Selling it in 1899, he located in College City, buying a residence and has since made this place his home.  He is still interested in agriculture, having a grain ranch of one hundred and sixty acres at Grand Island, from which he receives a good income.  He is one of the directors and the vice-president of the College City Rochdale Company, and was largely interested in the erection of the College City Public Hall, serving as a member and as secretary of the building committee.


In Oakland, Cal., Mr. Wilkins married Maggie Myers, who was born on Grand Island, where her father, Andrew Myers, was a pioneer settler and a large farmer.  She is a woman of culture and ability, and was educated at the Marysville Convent.  Politically Mr. Wilkins is a loyal supporter of the principles of the Democratic party, and while a resident of Grand Island served as school trustee.  Fraternally he is a member of Grand Island Lodge No. 266, I.O.O.F., of Grimes, and of Cortina Court No. 1075, I.O.F., of Arbuckle.





[Inserted by D. Toole.]


William T. Wilkins


1897 Apr 23, Oakland Tribune, P6, Oakland, California

Real Estate Transactions


Thursday, April 22, 1897

Magdalena M. Hamilton and Margaret M. Wilkins to Belle Myers, N W 8th at 50 E Union E 50 x N 87-8 blk 548; N 16th st 230 W West at N 103-9 being the W 30 ft lt 18 blk C, North Okd Hd Assn; W. Market 41-8 N 16th st N 33-6 x W 100 blk 593 Reed tract; also ppty in Colusa; $10.


1900 Jan 28, The San Francisco Call, P30, San Francisco, California

Margaret M. and William T. Wilkins to Magdalena M. Hamilton (wife of W. T.) all interest in lot on N line of Sixteenth street, 260 W of West street, W 30 by N 203:9, being the W 30 feet of lot 18, block C, property of North Oakland, Homestead Association, Oakland; also lot of W line of Market street, 41:6  of Sixteenth, N 41:9 by W 100, being lot 14 and portion of lots 13 and 15, block 593, Reed Tract, Oakland; $10.

Magdalena M. and William T. Hamilton to Margaret M. Wilkins (wife of W. T.), lot on W line of Market street, 93:3 N of Sixteenth, N 41:9 by W 100, being the E portion of lot 12 and N portion of lot 13, block 593, Reed Tract, Oakland; $10.


1928 Apr 29, Oakland Tribune, PM-7, Oakland, California

Napa, April 28 – Mayor Fred H. Heagler of Vallejo with William Wilkins, Y.M.C.A. secretary of that city, visited in Napa.


1930 Oct 26, Oakland Tribune, P25, Oakland, California

Mrs. Margaret Wilkins, who has been visiting relatives in Arbuckle and College City for the past two weeks, has returned to her home in Oakland.  She is a former resident of Colusa.


1931 July 22, San Francisco Chronicle, P15, San Francisco, California

Jeffress – In Oakland, July 21, 1931, Lena Hamilton Jeffress, wife of the late James V. Jeffress, sister of Mrs. Margaret Wilkins, a native of Wisconsin.  Friends are invited to attend the funeral from the cathedral chapel of the Grant D. Miller Mortuary, 2850 Telegraph ave., Oakland, Thursday, July 23, 1931, at 4 o’clock p.m.  Interment private.


1931 Jul 29, Oakland Tribune, P3, Oakland, California

Will of Oakland Woman Leaves Funds to Charities

Mrs. Lena H. Jeffress, who died in Oakland on July 21, left nearly half of her $220,000 estate to charity, it was revealed today when a will dated May 13, 1929, and codicil dated June 16, 1930, were filed in the superior court for probate.  The estate consists of real property in Oakland valued at $200,000, according to a petition for probate of the will filed by Melvin G. Jeffress, stepson, who was named executor to serve without bond.  Other items to make up the estate are stocks $200, notes $7000, jewelry $1000, cash $4500 and real property in Berkeley worth $8000.  Bequests made to charities are as follows:  Baby hospital of Oakland, $20,000; Del Valle sanitorium[sic], $20,000; Arbuckle sanitarium, $10,000; west Oakland home, $20,000; Fred Finch Orphanage of Oakland, $5000; Home for Disabled War Veterans near Livermore, $10,000; First Methodist church of Oakland, $2000.  The Oakland Shrine Hospital for Crippled Children was named residuary legatee and will probably receive in the neighborhood of $40,000 after other bequests have been paid.  Bequests made to relatives and friends were as follows:  Margaret Wilkins, sister, 4520 Bond street, $25,000; Fred Wilkins, nephew, College City, Colusa county, $5000; Rodley Wilkins, College City, $5000; Melvin G. Jeffress, stepson, and his wife, Emma, 41 Plaza drive, Berkeley, $20,000.  Dean Paget Jeffress, Mary Emma Jeffress and Orville Pratt of 41 Plaza drive, Berkeley, $10,000, share and share alike; Mrs. E. D. Kelley of 2441 Jackson street, San Francisco, $1000; Ernest Innes of Sierra City, $5000; Julia Kather of Napa, $5000; Sherman Dodge, 3350 Harrison street, $10,000.  Roy M. Moore and Bessie Moore of 4520 Bond street, $5000, and Mrs. J. P. Wallace of Colusa, $1000.  The petition for probate of the will, filed by Attorney J. W. Bingaman, shows that Mrs. Jeffress lived at the Harrison apartments in Oakland at the time of her death and was 84 years old.


1972 Jan 10, Woodland Daily Democrat, P16, Woodland, California

Obituary Notices

Fred R. Wilkins

Services for Fred R. Wilkins, 88, widely known farmer of the College City area, were conducted Saturday in the Arbuckle United Methodist Church.  A native of Illinois and the son of Mr. and Mrs. William Wilkins, who settled in southern Colusa county, Mr. Wilkins died Friday in a rest home.  A lifelong Democrat, Mr. Wilkins served for many years on the Democratic central committee.  He was a member of the Arbuckle Lions club and served for a number of years as a director of the 44th Agricultural District association.  He is survived by his widow, Georgianna of Pleasant Hill; a son, Rodley Wilkins of College City; a daughter, June Easton of Pleasant Hill; three grandsons and six great-grandchildren.






Transcribed by Donna Toole.

­­­­Source: History of the State of California & Biographical Record of Coast Counties, California by Prof. J. M. Guinn, A. M., Page 594. The Chapman Publishing Co., Chicago, 1904.

© 2017  Donna Toole.








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