Monday, September 21, 2009

Marion's First Permanent Residence

Picture on the right is of the home known as the Wilsonia.

This house was build in 1846, by Harvey W. Bigham. It was Marion's first permanent family residence. It was located on the Centerville Road (now South Main St.) and fronting a lane or tract line (now East Depot St.)

It was sold to R. W. Wilson in 1890. In 1916, the home was remodeled and many improvements were made, converting it into the Park-Wilsonia Hotel. The building, already equipped with steam heating and water works including bath and commode, has a lavatory on each floor, and is lighted throughout with electricity. Spacious west and north colonial verandas, office, parlor and dining room have been provided.

At this point in time the location of the Wilsonia was located in a park. A park of grand old Oaks and stately Maples with the tall and graceful Lombardys interspersed with the other trees. It was named the Wilsonia, by R. W. Wilson's daughter in honor of her father.

After Mr. Wilson's death it was occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Sidney Marshall Jenkins and family. Mrs. Jenkins was a daughter of R. W. Wilson.

In August 1926, the Wilsonia, a historic landmark, was razed to make room for two new bungalow style homes to be built by Mr. J. N. Boston. One was to be his new home and the other for his son, Mr. Thomas Cochran, which would face East Depot Street.

These two homes are still standing today. Gordon Dicky is the owner of the J. N. Boston home facing South Main Street. The Thomas Cochran home sold last year to someone from out of town.

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