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George Watkins (1830-?)
Born in Livingston Co. N.Y., architect in Bay City, Mich.

1878 biography. (Added Feb., 2012)

American Biographical History of Eminent & Self-made Men - F.A. Barnard, 1878


Watkins, George, architect of Bay City, was born in Lima, Livingston County, New York, in 1830. He is the son of Nathan and Fanny (Pierce) Watkins; and, on his mother's side, as nearly as can be traced, is connected with the family of President Franklin Pierce. His mother was a native of New Hampshire. He traces his parental ancestry to one of four brothers who emigrated from Wales. His grandfather, who lived to an advance age, fought in the French and Indian War, on the English side, and service all through the Revolution. Mr. Watkins attended school in Lima, until 1842. In that year, the family removed to Grand Blanc, Michigan, where he continued his studies in the common schools the State then afforded, until his eighteenth year. He then learned his father's trade, -- that of a carpenter and joiner, -- and studied architecture during his leisure. He worked at his trade and continued studies in both Texas and Michigan, until 1862, and then established himself as a contractor and builder at Bay City.

In 1868 the demand for his services as architect became so great that he concluded to leave the business of builder for that of architect. He has erected nearly all the important buildings of Bay City; the High School at Flint, -- said to be the finest school building in the State; the dormitory in connection with the Agricultural Building, at Lansing; and others too numerous to mention here. For seven years, he was connected with C. K. Porter, of Buffalo, New York; and planned several of the prominent buildings at Buffalo, and at Erie, Pennsylvania. Among these were the Reed House and Scott Block, at Erie; and many costly structures at Buffalo. His profession career has been one of uninterrupted success; and his work has contributed much to the improvement of Bay City.

He is a member of the republican party; and cast his first vote for General Scott, the last candidate on the Whig ticket. He has taken the ninth degree in Masonry, and the sixth degree in the society of Odd-Fellows. He has been twice married. His first wife, Fidelia I. Miles, left three children. In November, 1876, he married Adelia B. Pollock, of Poughkeepsie, New York. Mr. Watkins had, from early boyhood, a love for his profession, and his success is due to his mechanical and artistic acquirements. These were obtained by industry, energy, and determination. He is now the firm of Watkins & Hidden, Bay City; and Watkins & Arnold, of Lansing. Between the two places, Mr. Watkins spends his time, and his practice extends nearly all over Michigan.

Additional Notes.

    1850 Census: Flint, Genesee, Mich.

  • Watkins, Nathan b. 1801, New York.
  • Fanny, wife b. 1806, New Hampshire.
  • George, son b. 1830, New York.
  • Fanny S., daughter b. 1833, New York.
  • Lucy E., daughter b. 1836, New York
  • Henry P., son b. 1842, New York

    1858 Michigan Marriages: Genesee Co.

  • George Watkins, b. 1830, married June 1, 1858, Fidelia Miles, b. 1833.

    1870 Census: Bay City, Bay, Mich.

  • Watkins, George b. 1830, New York.
  • Fidelia, wife b. 1833, New York.
  • Kate, daughter b. 1860, Mich.
  • Myron, son b. 1868, Mich.
  • Nathan, father - b. 1801, New York.
  • Harvey, brother b. 1842, New York
  • Lucy, sister, - b. 1837, New York

    1873 - Directory: Buffalo, N.Y.

  • Porter, Watkins & Co., architects, 6 and 7 Townsend block, 276 Main. Cyrus K Porter, res. Detroit, Mich. George Watkins, res. Bay City, Mich.

    1873 Michigan Births: Bay City, Bay Co.

  • Alla Watkins, born Aug. 11, 1873, daughter of George & Fidelia Watkins.

    1876 Michigan Marriages: Bay City, Bay, Mich.

  • George Watkins, b. 1830, N.Y., married Nov. 16, 1876, Delia B. Pollock, b. 1849, N.Y.

    1880 Joint Documents State of Michigan, Vol. 1.

  • Michigan School for the Blind On May 18th, the commission met in Lansing, to inspect the building, and employed George Watkins, of Bay City, and L. Mortimer Smith, of Detroit, to make an inspection of the building as architects, and report as to its safety for the use designed.

    1880 Census: Bay City, Bay, Mich.

  • Watkins, George b. 1831, New York architect.
  • Delia, wife b. 1838, New York.
  • Kate, daughter b. 1860, Mich.
  • Frank M., son b. 1869, Mich.
  • Carrie, daughter b. 1871, Mich.

    1913 Alabama Deaths: Springfill, Mobile Co.

  • Kate M. Watkins, b. 1861, Mich., died March 28, 1913, daughter of George and Fidelia Watkins.
Related Note & Pages

Relatd Pages:
Watkins, Henry P. brother
People Referenced
Miles, Fidelia (1-wife)
Watkins, Alla (dau)
Watkins, Carrie (dau)
Watkins, Frank M. (son)
Watkins, George (subject)
Watkins, Henry P. (bro)
Watkins, Kate (dau)
Watkins, Lucy (sis)
Watkins, Myron (son)
Watkins, Nathan (father)
Pierce, Fanny (mother)
Pierce, Franklin Pres.
Pollock, Adelia B. (2-wife)
Portor, Cyrus K.
Schott, Gen.
Smith, L. Mortimer
Subjects Referenced
Bay City, MI
Buffalo, NY
Detroit, MI
Erie, PA
Flint, MI
Genesee Co., MI
Lansing, MI
Lima, NY
Livingston Co., NY
Mobil Co., AL
New Hampshire
Portor, Watkins & Co.
Poughkeepsie, NY
Springfill, AL
Watkins & Arnold
Watkins & Hidden
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.