Biography of V. W. Sander

Success is not always the result of fortunate circumstances, but is the outcome of labor and business ability, and the one who achieves success along industrial or commercial lines must be possessed of energy, strong determination and executive force. Such are the qualities which have won for Mr. Sander a leading position among the merchants of Idaho and gained for him the presidency of the Idaho Mercantile Company, Limited, of Coeur d’Alene.

A native of Germany, he was born February 4, 1857, and is a son of Henry and Henrietta (Othmer) Sander, also natives of the same country. In 1860 they came with their family to the New World, taking up their residence in Muscatine, Iowa, where the parents died. The subject of this review was only three years of age at the time of the emigration to America. He was reared in Muscatine and acquired his education in the common and high schools of that city, after which he entered upon his business career as a clerk, spending three years as a salesman in the drygoods store of General Gordon, of that city. In 1877 he made his way westward to California, where he was employed as a clerk in a general store for two years, and in 1879 he removed to the territory of Washington, where he secured a ranch, upon which he made his home until the following year. In 1880 he came to what is now the city of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, and for several years was associated in business with George B. Wonnacott. In 1883 he began business on his own account, opening a general merchandising establishment, and on the 1st of March, 1895, was instrumental in organizing the Idaho Mercantile Company, Limited, of which he was elected president. It was capitalized for thirty thousand dollars, and from the beginning the new enterprise has been attended with a marked degree of success. They carry the largest stock in this section of the state and their goods are of the best possible selection to meet the varied demands of the trade of this region. In 1891 the large brick block in which the business is conducted was completed. It is fifty by one one hundred feet, and is two stories in height with basement.

In 1886 was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Sander and Miss Lulu Lohmann, of Burlington, Iowa, and they now have an interesting family of four children: William E., Henrietta C, Dorothy L. and Carolton A. In his social relations Mr. Sander is a Knight of Pythias, and in politics is a Republican. He keeps well informed on the issues of the day, yet is not an office-seeker, preferring to devote his time and energies to his business interests. His keen discrimination in commercial matters, his courteous treatment and honorable dealing have secured to him a liberal patronage, and his straightforward business methods have gained him the commendation and confidence of the general public.



Illustrated History of the State of Idaho. Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company. 1899.

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