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Walter Atkins


Posted By: Fran Hunt, Volunteer
Date: 10/2/2001 at 19:30:32

From the Portrait and Biographical Album of Jefferson and Van Buren Counties - 1890
Walter Atkins, a physician and surgeon of Lebanon Iowa, commenced the practice of medicine in that place in 1887. He has resided in Van Buren County during the greater part of his life but is a native of Delaware. The family is of French extraction and was founded in American during the seventeenth century.
Many of its members were seafaring people and through several generations they continued their residence in Delaware. The father of our subject Henry Atkins was born in that state and in his youth learned the carpenters trade which he there followed until 1860, when he came to Van Buren county Iowa, with his family. He settled in Milton, where is engaged in the furniture business until his death, which occurred in April 1869, at the age of forty-eight years. He married Mary Joseph, who was a native of Delaware and whose father served in the Revolutionary War. She still survives her husband and makes her home in Milton. The children born unto this worthy couple are Walter, whose name heads this sketch; James who is married and resides in Jackson Township, Van Buren County; Ida, wife of Oliver Burton of Osceola County Iowa; and Theodosia, wife of George Russell of Milton.
The birth of our subject occurred in 1853, and when a lad of seven summers he was brought by his parents to Iowa. The family located in Milton, and in its schools he began his education, which he completed by a full course of study in the Troy Academy, of Troy Iowa. His school life being ended, he entered upon his business career as a teacher in Jackson Township and in connection with the prosecution of that profession engaged in painting and plastering for some fire years. It was his desire to make the practice of medicine his life work and by the pursuit of those vocations just mentioned he acquired the funds necessary to fit him for his chosen work. In 1884, he entered the Medical Institute of Keokuk Iowa and after two years of thorough study was graduated in the class of 1886. He then opened an office in the vicinity of his old home. It is said that one cannot make a success of such a business in the community where they have been reared, but if this rule holds good in most cases Dr. Atkins is an exception to it. By close application to business as a supplement to his skill and ability, he has won a large and lucrative practice, which is increasing from year to year. The past year, 1889, netted him $3,500.
An important event in the life of Dr. Atkins occurred in Davis County, Iowa in 1877, when he was joined in wedlock with Miss Catharine Oliver, daughter of James and Mercy Noel Oliver, who were natives of Ohio and moved to Davis County Iowa in 1863, where they now reside. To this union have been born three sonsóPerry, now a lad of twelve years; Clarence, ten years of age; and Clyde who is now in his seventh year. The Doctor and his wife are well known throughout the community where they make their home and rank high in the social world. He is a worthy and enterprising citizen and one who manifests a commendable interest in everything pertaining to the welfare of town and county. He votes with the Democratic Party and socially is a member of Lone Star Lodge, No 155, I.O.O.F.
I am not related, and am posting this biography for those who may find this person in their family history.


Van Buren Biographies maintained by Rich Lowe.
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