WILLIAM E. PARSONS
††††††††††† The study of the life of the representative American never fails to afford much pleasing and valuable instruction, developing a mastering of expedient which has brought about wonderful results.† The subject of this review is a worthy representative of that type of American character, and his life stands in exemplification of the opportunities afforded to young men who are ambitious and energetic.† At the early age of ten years he stated out upon his business career and has steadily worked his way upward, overcoming the obstacles and difficulties in his path and at length attained the place of affluence.† His is now engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigars, tobacco and smokerís articles at Grass Valley, and is numbered among the enterprising businessmen of the place.
††††††††††† Mr. Parsons is a native of Branch County, Michigan, born January 7, 1858, his parents being Renoldo and Sarah (Misner) Parsons.† The father, a farmer by occupation, was a native of New York and a representative of a family that for eight generations has resided upon this continent.† Removing from the east, he took up his residence in the Wolverine state, where he engaged in agricultural pursuits up to the time of his death, which occurred in February, 1863.† His wife was a native of Ohio and was of German lineage, the Misner family having been founded in Pennsylvania at an early day.
††††††††††† Mr. Parsons spent his childhood and youth in the county of his nativity, pursuing his education in the public schools; but his privileges in that direction were limited, for at the tender age of ten years he began earning his own livelihood; and whatever success he has since achieved is the result of his unaided efforts.† He learned the cigar-markersí trade in Coldwater, Michigan, and after working as a journeyman along that line in several cities of the Union, he went to Buffalo, New York, where he was employed three years, after which he returned to Michigan.† In 1884 he came to the west, locating first in Utah, after which he spent some time in San Francisco, whence he removed to Oakland.† In 1884 he came to Grass Valley and, after working for several months in the employ of D. T. Tietgen, he made a trip to the east.† Upon his return to this city he entered into partnership with his former employer, an association that was maintained until 1888, when Mr. Tietgen sold his interest to Paul Quick, Sr., and the enterprise has since been carried on under the firm name of Parsons & Quick.† They manufacture White Labor cigars and also do a retail business in tobacco and smokersí articles, having a well appointed establishment at No. 103 Main Street.† The quality of their goods has secured them a liberal patronage and their business has steadily increased in volume and importance.
††††††††††† Mr. Parsons has been twice married.† In Michigan, in 1879, he wedded Miss Dolly Moore, who died June 3, 1881, and on the 16th of September, 1885, he wedded Levina A. Quick, of Grass Valley.† They have two children, Raymond W. and Emily.† Mr. Parsons takes an active interest in political affairs, keeps well informed on the issues of the day and gives his support to the Populist Party.† At this writing he is the chairman of the county central committee and his executive ability and keen discrimination enables him to control successfully the working interests of the political organization.† He has filled the office of city treasurer from 1894 until 1896, and was afterward elected mayor of the city for a term of two years, his administration being progressive and commendable.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010† Gerald Iaquinta.