Biography of William Sanders
Bristol County, MA Biographies

Sanders, William, county commissioner of Bristol county, and successful merchant, was born in Warren, R. I., December 10, 1843, a son of Henry and Martha B. (Viall) Sanders. When he was fourteen years old the family removed to New Bedford and here he was educated in the public schools, completing the high school course. His first business experience was as a clerk in the post office at Quincy, where he spent two years and at the end of this time went to Boston, entering the employ of a wholesale clothing firm with whom he remained several years, gaining a wide experience in that business, in February, 1866, he went into business for himself, opening a retail clothing store in New Bedford at 108 Union street. After conducting the business for twelve years alone he admitted to partnership his brother, H. V. Sanders, under the firm name of Sanders Brothers Owing to the increasing demands of the business, which had been highly successful from the start, they moved in 1878 to the Waite block on Union street. The firm was dissolved in 1881 and H. V. Sanders was succeeded by Frank C. Barrows, who had long been a clerk in the store, the firm name being changed to Sanders & Barrows and continuing in this style until 1894, when a stock company, the Sanders & Barrows Clothing Company, was formed with a capital of $50,000, Mr. Sanders being treasurer and general manager. In the same year the business was removed to the present location in the new Merchants' Bank building. From a modest start it has grown to one of the largest enterprises of its kind in the State, south of Boston. Mr. Sanders has for many years been prominent in public affairs. He has served in the Legislature as a member of the lower house two terms (1879-80) and has been county commissioner of Bristol county since 1889. Two years of this period he has served as chairman. He has also served as chairman of the cemetery board for three years. He is a veteran of the Civil war, a member of the G. A. R., Post No. 1, and served as commander of the New Bedford City Guards for ten years. In politics he is a staunch Republican and has for many years been active in municipal affairs. He has been asked many times to stand as a candidate for mayor, but always declined on account of business interests. He is thoroughly well known all over Bristol county in connection with his duties as county commissioner. He is a member of Acushnet Lodge of Odd Fellows and has been twice regent of Omega Council of the Royal Arcanum. He is also a member of the Wamsutta and Dartmouth Clubs and a member and director of the Board of Trade. November, 6, 1866, Mr. Sanders married Lucretia C. Cannon of New Bedford. He is of English ancestry and is the owner of a coat of arms dated 1522, granted to one of his ancestors. His great.grandfather on the maternal side served as a captain in the war of the Revolution and the latter's commossion is now in his hands.

Our county and its people
A descriptive and biographical history of
Bristol County, Massachusetts
Prepaired and published under the auspices of
The Fall River News and The Taunton Gasette
With assistance of Hon. Alanson Borden
The Boston History Company, Publishers, 1899.

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