RICHARD COATES WILKINS was born on August 27, 1845 in Pemberton, New Jersey to Richard Wilkins and his wife, the former Elizabeth Ann Coates. His father was a merchant and the family living in Pemberton when the Census was taken in 1850. His grandparents, Isaac and Ann Wilkins, were then living in North Camden. Isaac Wilkins died in April of 1853, and it would seem that his son moved to Camden around that time. Ann Wilkins died in Camden in 1862. 

Richard Wilkins' family had moved to Camden's North Ward by the time the 1860 Census was taken. Interestingly enough, the elder Wilkins occupation was listed as "Gentleman". Also at home was older sister Sallie Ann. Sadly, both of his parents died in April of 1861.

On June 1, 1874 Richard Coates Wilkins married Laura Stokes, whose family was one of the first British clans to settle in South Jersey. He had been appointed to a position with the First National Bank of Camden, and at some point during the 1870s was made Paymaster of the Sixth Regiment, New Jersey National Guard. Nathan F. Cowan, a co-worker at the bank, and E.L. Wright, were

the witnesses for the marriage license. The wedding was performed by Reverend Garrison of St. Paul's Episcopal Churrch

Richard Coates Wilkins' sister Sallie Ann Wilkins had married a young physician, Dr. Henry Ackley, at some point during the Civil War. There was a child, Henry Wilkins Ackley, who sadly was born and died the same day, January 17, 1865. Sallie Ackley would be a widow before the year was out, her husband passing away in Philadelphia on December 17, 1865.  On January 22, 1877, she married her brother's friend, Nathan F. Cowan, and bore three sons, William and twins Edgar and Herbert. Nathan F. Cowan was associated with the First National Bank of Camden for 50 years, retiring in 1922 when it merged with the National State Bank. The Cowans lived at 228 Cooper Street in Camden before moving to a mansion at 105 North Cove Road in Pennsauken (Merchantville is/was on the other side of Cove Road). William Cowan would own the home next door at 113 North Cove Road. Sallie Wilkins Cowan died in 1912 and was buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Camden.

Richard Coates Wilkins was living at 319 Pearl Street in Camden when the Census was taken in 1880 with his wife Laura and son, Eugene Taylor Wilkins. A daughter, Sallie, had died in June of 1874 the age of eight months. Richard C. Wilkins' occupation is listed as "retired" which is somewhat unusual given that he was but 33 at the time. Perhaps his health had already broken down, as he died on March 9, 1883. Laura Wilkins and her son moved to Merchantville for a short time before moving to Philadelphia. They retained ties to Camden, however. Eugene Taylor Wilkins married in Camden in 1903.

Richard Coates Wilkins
Baptism Certiicate
Church of Christ
Pemberton, New Jersey
March 30, 1847

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Richard Wilkins
the father of
Richard Coates Wilkins

Evergreen Cemetery - Camden, New Jersey
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Left: the grave of Richard Wilkins, father of Richard Coates Wilkins, who died April 4, 1861. Right: the grave of his mother Eliza Ann Wilkins, who died 10 days later, and his daughter Sallie, who died at eight months of age.

Richard Coates Wilkins at 18 with his sister, Sallie Ann Wilkins, age 22
Sallie Ann married Dr. Henry Ackley in 1861. She later married Nathan Cowan.

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Undated Newspaper Article
Richard Coates Wilkins
employment at the
First National Bank of Camden

Marriage License

Richard Coates Wilkins
Laura Stokes

June 1, 1874
at the home of
Mrs. Elizabeth Davis

Certified by Rev. Garrison
rector of
St. Paul's Episcopal Chuch

Witnessed by
Nathan F. Cowan
E.L. Wright

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Business Card of Richard Coates Wilkins
Paymaster, 6th Regiment, New Jersey National Guard

Undated Newspaper Article
Philadelphia Newspaper

Visit by officers of the 6th Regiment,
New Jersey National Guard,
to the Philadelphia home of Captain William C. Shinn

Lieutenant Colonel William H. Hempsing
Captain Henry C. Lees
Frederick A. Rex
Lieutenant E.L. Thornton
Richard Coates Wilkins
6th Regiment Band
under the direction of
Professor Joseph Jennings