HENRY WILKIE is a general farmer, living on section 26, township 16, range 11, and owns a fine farm of eighty acres. If there is one thing in agriculture in which a German excels, it is in his thoroughness in cultivating his land. On his farm nothing is allowed to go to waste, and everything connected with it denotes thrift and industry. Though Mr. Wilkie's farm is not so large as those of some of his neighbors, it will be a safe assertion to make, that he gets as much from an acre of ground as any other farmer. It is a notable characteristic of his race to do all things well.
Mr. Wilkie has lived on his present farm since 1865, coming here from Sheboygen, Wis., where he had lived from his boyhood days. He was born in Mechlenburg, Germany, on Aug. 7, 1832. He is the son of Charles and Elizabeth (Schmidt) Wilkie, who were also natives of Mechlenburg, and were residents of that city until they came to America. The father was a shoemaker by trade, and a successful one. In 1849, the father, mother and two sons concluded to seek their fortunes in far-off America, of which they had read and heard so favorably, and after a voyage of seven weeks and three days they landed, without incident worthy of mention, at New York. They immediately started for Sheboygen County, Wis., where they arrived in due time, and in a few years the elder Wilkie purchased a tract of land, upon which he is yet living, at the age of eighty-five years, and is enjoying good health. His wife died in 1887, and was then eighty-three years and two months of age. They had celebrated their golden wedding five years before the death of Mrs. Wilkie. She was a member of the Lutheran Church, and her husband also believes in the same religion. In their neighborhood none were better thought of than this venerable couple.
Henry Wilkie is the eldest of the two sons born to his parents. His brother, William, died, leaving a wife and two children, his death occurring in Jacksonville. Henry was educated in his native city, and was early apprenticed to the carpenter's trade, finishing it at Chicago. He became a good mechanic, and at this business he first got a start in the world. He was married in Wisconsin to Miss Henriette Seibert, who was born in Germany in 1841, and was four years old when her parents came to the United States. Her father, Charles Seibert, is yet living on a farm in Sheboygen County, Wis., where her mother died when Mrs. Wilkie was quite young. Mrs. Wilkie was educated and lived to maturity in Wisconsin. She is the mother of three children, as follows: Adelia is the wife of Philip Engel, who is a druggist, living in Kansas City, Mo.; Made and Charles are at home, assisting their father and mother in carrying on the farm.
Mr. and Mrs. Wilkie are well known, in the community where they have so long resided, as a worthy couple, and of whom naught can be said but words of commendation. Mr. Wilkie, politically, does not affiliate with any party, but prefers to vote and act independently. He cares little for politics, and is only desirous of seeing the best men in office.