WILLIAM WAKEFIELD                    GRAVESTONE PHOTO                      

Allen County Herald, Pg 1, Thursday, Feb. 1, 1906

Died:  Jan. 29, 1906







A Leading Citizen of Allen County--Member

of Legislature in 1873—Surgeon

of the 9th Kansas Volunteers.



  Mr. Wm. Wakefield one of the early settlers of Allen county and a man was was known and respected by a large number of the citizens of the county died at his home one half mile east of Humboldt Monday afternoon January 29th, at two o’clock.  He had been in failing health for the last three years but in spite of his advanced age he bore his illness with characteristic courage and sturdiness and his death was a shock to those who were not aware of his serious condition.

  Dr. Wm. Wakefield was born in Nelson county Kentucky January 9th, 1824.  He spent his boyhood there and at Frankfort, the capital of the state.  He graduated from the University of Louisville Medical College in March 1849.  In 1850 he came to Humboldt, and began the practice of his profession.  The war breaking out soon afterwards he joined the 9th Kansas Volunteers, and served as surgeon for four years.  Those were exciting times and the 9th Kansas had its full share in the events of those days.  At the time of Price’s raid Dr. Wakefield’s family was living in a house where the home of the editor of the HERALD is now located.  The raiders had taken all of the doctor’s personal property when Col. Livingston who was leading them interfered through personal friendship to the doctor; and compelled them to restore the property and save the house.  It was one of the few buildings which were saved from destruction.

  Dr. Wakefield was married twice.  His first marriage was in 1851 and two children were born to him.  His wife died in a few years and in 1859 he was married to Emma Blackwell who survives him.  From this union he had ten children.  Of his twelve children eight are still living and all of them hold responsible positions in society.

  Dr. Wakefield has been identified with the business life of Humboldt and Allen county from the beginning.  Shortly after the war he entered the general merchandise business with J. B. Young.  He afterwards went into the hardware business in partnership with J. C. Redfield.  Following this he was a member of the drug firm of Hart & Wakefield and then in company with  A. Chamberlain he formed the firm of Wakefield & Chamberlain.  The panic of 1873 forced the firm to the wall and it was obliged to suspend business.  Dr. Wakefield had in the meantime gone into politics and was elected a member of the legislature in 1872.  He re-entered the drug business and erected the building now occupied by E. Wittak.  In 1887 he retired from business and in 1888 was appointed postmaster serving for four years.  Since then he has lived quietly on the old homestead east of town conscious of all life well spent and loved by all who knew him.  Dr. Wakefield was the oldest physician in Allen county.  He had not practiced for the last ten or twelve years, but he probably served at his profession as long as any one in the county.

  The funeral was held at the house Wednesday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock and was attended by the G. A. R. in a body and a large gathering of friends and neighbors, who join with the family in mourning the departure of a true friend, yet are conscious that he has gone to well earned reward after a life spent in helpfulness to his fellow men.