Albert Joseph Perkins

Men of Progress. Wisconsin. (pages 451-486) A selected list of biographical sketches and portraits of the leaders in business, professional and official life. Together with short notes on the history and character of Wisconsin.

PERKINS, Albert Joseph, a prominent business man of Medford, was born in Windsor county, Vt., December 27th, 1830. His parents, Joseph and Sarah Jackman Perkins, were of the substantial agricultural class and in good financial circumstances.

A. J. Perkins received his education in the common district schools of his native town, and, in 1853, came to Wisconsin, settling in Jefferson county. He began teaching school, when seventeen years of age, and continued teaching through thirteen winters. His summers in the meantime were spent in learning and working at the trade of carpenter. In 1859 he was elected superintendent of schools of the township of Jefferson and held the office one year with great satisfaction to the people. He was elected on the Republican ticket, though the township was strongly Democratic. Removing to Waupaca county, he was engaged from 1865 to 1874 in running a large saw mill on the Little Wolf river for the Wisconsin Lumber company. He was elected chairman of the town of Mukwa in 1870 and re-elected in 1871. Active, intelligent, faithful and efficient in whatever he undertook, his services were in requisition in many directions, and in 1874 he was elected county clerk of Waupaca county, and re-elected for a second term of two years. In 1878 he move to Medford, Taylor county, and engaged in the real estate and abstract business, which he continued until 1884, when he was elected county clerk of Taylor county, and re- elected two years later. At about the expiration of his second term of office, he and his son engaged in the flour and feed business, erecting the first and the only flouring mill in the city, and this business, which has grown to large proportions, they are still conducting. He was the first major of Medford, having been elected in April, 1889, and re- elected in 1890.

Mr. Perkins is the owner of a considerable amount of land in and around the city of Medford, some of which has been platted ad sold for city lots. He has been land agent for the Wisconsin Central Railroad company for the past sixteen years.

Mr. Perkins was not in the military service during the war, owing to physical disability, but he heartily supported the government both financially and morally in its struggle with the rebellion. He has always been a Republican in politics, and, in 1892, was elected a member of the assembly from the district composed of Oneida, Price, Taylor and Vilas counties, by a majority of eighty-two in a Democratic district. The same year Cleveland, for president, carried the district by four hundred. He refused a second legislative term. In religion he is a Universalist.

Mr. Perkins was married December 26th, 1850, to Charlotte M. Winterling, daughter of Nicholas Winterling of Jefferson, Wis., and they have one son, Frank M. Perkins.


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