COATES WILKINS was born on August 27, 1845 in Pemberton, New
Jersey to Richard Wilkins and his wife, the former Elizabeth Ann
Coates. His father was a merchant and the family living in
Pemberton when the Census was taken in 1850. His grandparents,
Isaac and Ann Wilkins, were then living in North Camden. Isaac
Wilkins died in April of 1853, and it would seem that his son
moved to Camden around that time. Ann Wilkins died in Camden in
family had moved to Camden's North Ward by the time the 1860
Census was taken. Interestingly enough, the elder Wilkins
occupation was listed as "Gentleman". Also at home was
older sister Sallie Ann. Sadly, both of his parents died in
April of 1861.
June 1, 1874 Richard Coates Wilkins married Laura Stokes, whose
family was one of the first British clans to settle in South
Jersey. He had been appointed to a position with the First
National Bank of Camden, and at
some point during the 1870s was made Paymaster of the Sixth
Regiment, New Jersey National Guard. Nathan F.
co-worker at the bank, and E.L. Wright, were
witnesses for the marriage license. The wedding was performed by
Reverend Garrison of St.
Paul's Episcopal Churrch.
Coates Wilkins' sister Sallie
Ann Wilkins had married a young physician, Dr.
Henry Ackley, at some point during the Civil War. There was
a child, Henry
Wilkins Ackley, who sadly was born and died the same day,
January 17, 1865. Sallie Ackley would be a widow before the year
was out, her husband passing away in Philadelphia on December
17, 1865. On
January 22, 1877, she married her brother's friend, Nathan
F. Cowan, and bore three sons, William and twins Edgar
and Herbert. Nathan F. Cowan was associated with the
National Bank of Camden for 50 years, retiring in 1922 when
it merged with the National
State Bank. The Cowans lived at 228 Cooper
Street in Camden before moving to a mansion at 105 North
Cove Road in Pennsauken (Merchantville is/was on the other side
of Cove Road). William Cowan would own the home next door at 113
North Cove Road. Sallie Wilkins
Cowan died in 1912 and was
buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Camden.
Coates Wilkins was living at 319 Pearl Street in Camden when the
Census was taken in 1880 with his wife Laura and son, Eugene
Taylor Wilkins. A daughter, Sallie, had died in June of 1874 the
age of eight months. Richard C. Wilkins' occupation
is listed as "retired" which is somewhat unusual given
that he was but 33 at the time. Perhaps his health had already
broken down, as he died on March 9, 1883. Laura Wilkins and her
son moved to Merchantville for a short time before moving to
Philadelphia. They retained ties to Camden, however. Eugene
Taylor Wilkins married in Camden in 1903.