WILLIAM SIMPSON WALLACE. The city of Sparta, Illinois, has intimately known Dr. William Simpson Wallace for the past twenty years. Coming to Sparta as a young dental student, assisting in the office of Dr. Simpson, he succeeded his relative in the profession when he had fulfilled his college obligations and was ready to settle down to the steady routine of professional life. Since that time he has been a prominent and well known figure in Sparta. A quiet man and unambitious for public aggrandizement, yet his influence is felt in many quarters, and he is regarded in the community where he has lived for so many years as one of its dependable and most estimable citizens.
William Simpson Wallace was born in Pinckneyville, Illinois, January 6, 1871. His parents were South Carolina people, coming to Illinois in 1868 from Chester district, where William Wallace, the father, was born. William Wallace took part in the War of the Rebellion, bearing arms in the Confederacy, as became his southern blood and training. After the war, when he removed with his family to Illinois, he engaged in farming in Pinckneyville, and he died there in December, 1870. His
wife was Miss Sarah Simpson, a daughter of Hugh Simpson, to whom is due the credit of the movement of the Simpson and Wallace families out of the South. Hugh Simpson died in December, the same month of the death of his son-in-law. More extended mention is made of him in the biographical sketch of Dr. Simpson, to be found elsewhere in this work. The issue of the union of William and Sarah (Simpson) Wallace were: Janette, who died unmarried in 1892; Thomas, who is engaged in the drug business in Pinckneyville, and Dr. William S., of Sparta. The mother died May 21, 1909.
Dr. Wallace as a boy was given the advantages of the public schools, and he later attended the Pinckneyville high school, in which he was well equipped in the common branches of study. Thus prepared, he sought work as a teacher, and he taught successfully in the country and in the grades of the Pinckneyville schools during the four years following his graduation from the Pinckneyville high school. He had in the meantime decided upon dentistry as a profession for himself, and he took his elementary lessons and work in the office and under the tutelage of his uncle, Dr. Simpson, in Sparta. In 1893 he began a regular course of study in Washington University at St. Louis, completing the course in 1896, at which time he established himself in the office so long presided over by his estimable relative.
In his capacity as a citizen Dr. Wallace is without any ambition for political or social honors. He is well content to be a plain, every-day man about town, the respect of his fellow townspeople being sufficient glory for him. In his political opinions he is affiliated with the Democratic party, and is sympathetic and active in its behalf. He is president of the Sparta Fair Association and vice president of the Sparta State Bank, of which he is one of the charter stock holders. Dr. Wallace holds membership in the St. Clair County Dental Society, in the Southern Illinois Dental Sdciety, and in the Illinois State Society.
In September, 1899, Dr. Wallace married in St. Louis Miss Ida Baird, of Pinckneyville, a daughter of Alexander Baird, one of the prominent business men of that place, but who passed away in recent years. He was a citizen of Chester, Illinois, in an early day, living there directly following his advent in Illinois from South Carolina, where he was born. His wife was a daughter of the Henderson family, natives of Pennsylvania and pioneers of Randolph county. Their daughter, Mrs. Wallace, was educated in the public schools and in the Southern Illinois Normal School at Carbondale, and also pursued a course in elocution in the Chicago University.