A native of Wayne County, Ind., where he first saw the light on August 9, 1848, Marion A. Stillens has found delightful retirement in the Golden State in his comfortable home on Capitol Avenue, just south of Alum Rock Avenue, about two miles east of San Jose. He is a son of Joseph and Clarisa (Decker) Stillens, the former a native of Pennsylvania and a fanner, who moved to Moultrie County, Ill. There were four children in the family—Ezra, the oldest; Marion, our subject; Martha, who is now deceased, and Millie, the youngest, and with these the lad shared the benefits of a common school education.

When nine years of age Marion accompanied his parents to Moultrie County, Ill., and when twenty-three years of age he left the home ranch and on April 23, 1872, was married to Miss Laverna Shields, a native of Virginia. She was nine years old when ner parents removed to Moultrie County, Ill., where she continued her education. After their marriage Mr. Stillens farmed for a while in Illinois, and later he went to Hall County, Nebr., where he followed agricultural pursuits for six years. He then returned to Illinois and located at Arthur, in that state; and for the remainder of the time that he was in the Middle West he engaged in carpenter work. His wife died in 1889 and he was married a second time, in 1902, to Miss Jennie Carpenter, a native of Indiana.

In 1902 Mr. Stillens came out to California and settled at Whittier, where he lived for a year and a half, and as a market gardener he made a real success of his enterprise. Coming north to Santa Clara County in 1904 he purchased five acres of land on Capitol Avenue, and this he set out to prunes and vines. His good wife died in 1917, lamented by all who had come to appreciate her sterling qualities. By his first marriage Mr. Stillens had five children, and their names are Ellroy, Joseph, Bige, Melvin and Wilbur; and by his last union he has a daughter, Mrs. Mary Maude Beaudikofer, of San Jose. Mr. Stillens has always taken a live interest in public questions and always sought to do his full duty as a citizen in civic affairs. He endeavors to keep himself independent of mere party bias, and so is far freer to pull a hard and steady stroke with his fellows.
From Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California,  published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 1480


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight