WALTER EDWIN KENT
One of the enterprising, wide-awake and progressive merchants of Jackson is Mr. Kent, a native son of California, his birth having occurred in San Francisco, on the 26th of December, 1854. His ancestors resided in New England. His father, Edwin A. Kent, was a native of New Hampshire and in August, 1849, took up his abode in San Francisco. He was born July 15, 1824, and was educated in Boston, Massachusetts. At length he determined to seek a home in the land of gold and on a sailing vessel rounded Cape Horn. He became a resident of Nevada City, where he owned considerable property and was also interested in a water ditch. In 1856 he removed thence to Amador County, residing in Volcano and Jackson most of the time until his death, which occurred in 1890, in the sixty-sixth year of his age. In San Francisco he was married to Miss Abbie F. Ward, a native of Salem, Massachusetts, and five children blessed their union, of whom four are living, namely: Edwin W., Eva L., Amy F. and Mrs. W. E. Agard, the last named now a resident of San Diego. All are respected citizens of the communities in which they reside.
Walter Edwin Kent, the eldest of the family, was educated in Amador County and began life on his own account as a clerk in the general mercantile store owned by L. Newman & Company, of Jackson. He remained with them for five years, becoming an expert salesman and acquiring a thorough knowledge of the business. At length he determined to embark in merchandising on his own account, and in 1882 entered into partnership with J. M. Levy, opening a store in Jackson. They conducted the enterprise for six and a half years, and on the expiration of that period Mr. Kent sold his interest to his partner and leased the Globe Hotel, which he conducted for two years. He then opened his present grocery and provision store, and has carried on operations there with excellent success, having gained an enviable reputation as a prompt, reliable, energetic and honorable merchant. In 1890, upon the death of his father, he assumed control of his father’s undertaking business, in partnership with J. A. Butterfield, and in that enterprise they are meeting with well earned success.
Mr. Kent was happily married in 1888 to Miss Nellie L. Keeney, a native of Amador County, by whom he has three children: Vivian Blanche; Loring Edwin and Ward Foster. Mr. Kent belongs to the Masonic and Odd Fellows societies and the Independent Order of Foresters, and in these organizations he has filled various offices. He is also connected with the Native Sons of the Golden West, in which he is a past president. His political support has ever been given the Republican Party and he is most earnest in his advocacy of its principles, yet has never sought or desired public office. He has made a good record as a businessman and citizen, being at all times reliable and upright. That his warmest friends are numbered among those who have known him from boyhood is an indication that his life has been a useful and active one, worthy of the highest regard.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.