Solano County

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Charles L. Winchell of the C. L. Winchell Hardware Company, at Vallejo; past president of the Vallejo Chamber of Commerce and for years an active and influential factor in the commercial life of this community, is a native son of California and has always lived in this state, a resident of Vallejo since the days of his childhood, thus an observer of men and events here for more than half a century, during which period this community has developed from a small village to its present fine status, one of the most progressive and enterprising cities in the state.

Mr. Winchell was born in Colusa county on November 23, 1859, and is a son of Merritt G. and Mary (Wilsey) Winchell, both natives of the state of New York, who were married in Illinois and who in 1852 came to California, crossing the plains by ox team and arriving here after a toilsome journey of six months duration. For a time after his arrival here M. G. Winchell took a part in mining operations in Eldorado county, then opened a store at Cashville in Yolo county and after a period of mercantile experience there disposed of his store and moved into Colusa county, where he was for some time engaged in raising sheep. In 1867 he moved with his family to Vallejo, established his home here and in this place he and his wife spent the remainder of their lives. M. G. Winchell was by trade a tinsmith and upon taking up his residence at Vallejo opened a tin shop, which in 1885 he developed into a general hardware store, the establishment with which his son Charles is now connected in a proprietary relation, this establishment thus now being of forty years' growth, one of the oldest continuing mercantile establishments in this section of California. M. G. Winchell died in 1901 and his name ever will be kept green in this community as one of the pioneer merchants who did well his part in general community development.

Charles L. Winchell was but seven or eight years of age when in 1867 he came to Vallejo with' his parents and he ever since has made his home here. He had his schooling in the local schools and early learned the details of the plumbing trade. For some time he worked at that trade in connection with operations at the navy yard and then he became engaged in business as a plumber on his own account, in time coming into possession of the hardware store that had been founded by his father and has since been engaged in business along that line, one of the veteran merchants of this section of California. In 1890 he married Rosetta J. Laverty of Nebraska. L. S. Denius, who married Mr. Winchellís daughter, Pearl, now has a partnership interest in the old established hardware store, the business of which' is carried on under the name of the C. L. Winchell Hardware Company, this arrangement having been entered into in 1908. Mr. Winchell has for years been an active and influential member of the Vallejo Chamber of Commerce, has served as president of that useful body and is now vice president of the same.

History of Solano County, California By Marguerite Hunt and Napa County, California By Harry Lawrence Gunn. From Their Earliest Settlement To The Present Time. Chicago. S.J. Clarke Pub. Co. 1926. 883 pages.

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This page was last updated 21 Oct 2007

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