Thursday, August 3, 2017

Johnson & Stokes Seed Catalog of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Johnson & Stokes Seed Catalog of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Walter P Stokes joined the Seed Company, owned by Herbert W Johnson, Republican Sheriff of Camden County, NJ, since 1876, in Merchantville, & it was renamed the Johnson & Stokes Seed Company in 1881. The enterprise was dissolved in 1906, & Walter Stokes resumed operating under his previous business name as Stokes' Standard Seeds & then as Stokes Seed Company. Walter P Stokes was born on June 4, 1856, in Pennsylvania, his father was Isaac & his mother was Mary. He married Anna N R Smedley, & they had 2 children. He then married Anna Taylor, & they had one son.   Walter P. Stokes, for many years engaged in the seed trade in Philadelphia, Pa., & a prominent member of the Society of Friends, died suddenly of heart disease on July 1, 1916; while on a fishing trip in Maine, & was buried in Upper Darby, PA.  Mr. Stokes resided in Moorestown, N.J. Walter P. Stokes was head of the tree commission of Moorestown, first president of the Moorestown Field Club, a member of the board of directors of the Friends hospital, Frankford, & of the Cheyney Institute for Colored Youth. He was a member of the Northfleld Country Club, Atlantic City, & the City Club, Philadelphia. He was a past president of the American Seed Trade Association & was widely known in the trade throughout the country. In 1916, the firm was taken over by Walter's son, Francis C. Stokes, a Rutgers horticultural alumnus, with a national reputation as a dynamic young seedsman who was responsible for developing some of the famous New Jersey tomatoes of the early 1900's. Reportedly, he was the 1st American seedsman to offer seeds in a tin can; 1st to protect seeds with a fungicide; & 1st to import from Italy & catalog broccoli for his customers.

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