Katharine Smith Wilkes dies Jan. 31 buried in Salado
Katherine Smith Wilkes died Jan. 31, 2000. She was born in Wichita Falls on Nov. 7, 1917, to Marvin and Emma John (Don) Ikard Smith. In Wichita Falls, she attended public schools, graduating from high school in 1933. Later she attended The Hockaday School in Dallas, Sophie Newcomb College in New Orleans, and the University of Texas. She graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1938. Katherine was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority for over 50 years.
Katherine had a fascinating and distinctive life. For the 1937 Galveston Mardi Gras, Governor Allred named Katherine the Duchess of Texas. During World War II, she worked on the Al-Can Highway in Alberta Canada for the Department ofDefense. From 1947-48. she taught as an exchange teacher in Birmingham, England. During her England experience, she was presented to the Queen of England at Hatfield House. During her European travels, she had an audience with Pope Pius XII.
In March 1951, she married Thomas Benjamin Wilkes, Jr., who was the love of her life. They had two children: Nancy Elisa and Carleton Sinclair. Tom and Katherine were avid antique collectors and lived in Temple and Salado, for almost four decades. They became very well known and highly respected as antique collectors, and founded the first antique business in Salado in 1969. Together they made almost 30 buying trips abroad for their antique shop, Thomas Wilkes, Ltd.
She was an officer and member of Alpha Kappa Gamma, The Antique Glass Club, the Betty Martin D.A.R. Chapter, the Colonial Dames, The Spade and Shovel Garden Club, the Magna Carta Dames, and numerous other clubs and societies. She was founding President of the Salado Historical Society.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas B. Wilkes, Jr. in 1989; a granddaughter. Lindsay Elisa Brown in 1980 and a grandson, Steven Brandon Brown in 1998.
Katherine is survived by her children: Elisa Ikard-Dunkley and her husband Steven R. Dunkley of Folksworth, England; and her son Carleton Sinclair Wilkes of Austin. She is survived by her brother Ikard Smith of Wichita Falls, and her sister, Marvin Gene Johnson of Dallas. Three grandchildren survive her: Thomas (Fore) Vernon Brown, IV, and his wife Crystal Borland Brown of Midland; Elliot Sinclair Wilkes of Austin; and Katherine Elizabeth Ikard of Baton Rouge, LA.
Two great-grandsons survive her: Theron Thomas Brown and Aiden Lee Brown of Midland.
Pallbearers were: Gary M. Jones, Warren Maupin, Jr. and Paul Boyd, Jr., all of Temple; Robert Pender of Round Rock; Wallace Rashall and Mike Borland of Midland; and Lawrence Marble of Katy. Honorary pallbearers were: Howell Hundley of Temple, Robert Lamb of Dallas, Clayton Jones of Houston, Robert Denman of Salado, and Porter Brandon of Long View.
Funeral services were held Feb. 5 Christ Episcopal Church in Temple with the Rev. David AIwine officiating. Graveside services were held at Salado Cemetery.
The family requests that memorials be made to the Salado Public Library, P.O. Box 706, Salado, TX 76571 of the St. David’s Episcopal Church, P.O. Box 315, Austin, TX 78767.