History of Decatur County, Iowa
Unless otherwise noted, biographies submitted by Dick Barton.
Thompson, who is a well known farmer and stockman of New Buda township,
was born May 2, 1860, in Wapello county, Iowa, a son of Francis
and Margaret (Ewing) Thompson.
The father, who was born near Danville,
Indiana, of Irish and Yankee ancestry, came to Iowa in the early
'40s and homesteaded land in Wapello county.
At the time of the Civil
war he put aside all personal considerations and enlisted in Company
E, Twenty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry.
At the close of hostilities
he returned to his farm in Wapello county, where he resided until
1879, when he came to New Buda township, Decatur county, buying sixty
acres of land.
Five years later he added forty acres to his holdings
and he devoted his time to the cultivation of his land until his
demise, which occurred in 1888.
His wife was also born near Danville,
Indiana, and came of Yankee stock.
Their marriage occurred at Danville.
She passed away in 1902 in Davis City, to which place she removed
following the demise of her husband.
Thompson received a good education, attending the public schools of
On putting aside his textbooks he concentrated his energies
upon helping his father with the work of the farm and following the
demise of the latter took charge of the home place, which he has since
owns one hundred acres of excellent land and in addition
to raising the usual crops breeds high grade stock and feeds a large
number of cattle and hogs annually which he sells to shippers.
the 14th of November, 1886, Mr. Thompson married Miss Abigail Robbins,
a daughter of John Porter and Rachel (Davis) Robbins.
was born in Athens county, Ohio, and came of Yankee ancestry.
he removed to Decatur county, Iowa, and cast in his lot with the early
settlers of New Buda township, where he entered land. His
at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Sidney Morris, at Bethany, Missouri,
on the 7th of December, 1913, when he had reached the advanced age
of seventy-nine years, two months and nineteen days, his natal day being
September 18, 1834. His wife, who was born in Ohio, became a resident
of Missouri in her girlhood and there their marriage was solemnized
in 1860. She
passed away in 1890 near Akron, Missouri.
is one of eleven children and has become the mother of six children,
as follows: Elva,
who was born August 26, 1887, died when nine
months old. Floyd,
who was born May 14, 1889, is assisting his father
with the farm work.
He is identified with the Independent Order of
Odd Fellows at Davis City.
Myrl, who was born October 6, 1892, is the
wife of Roy Mitchell, a farmer living near Fairfax, Missouri.
twin of Myrl, died when five months old.
Fay, whose birth occurred February
13, 1898, will graduate from the Davis City high school with the
class of 1916.
Mary Dean, who was born April 30, 1905, died at the age
of eight years.
Thompson is a democrat and for twenty-eight years has been a member of
the school board of independent district No. 2, of New Buda township, and
for a number of years was president of that body.
He is characterized
by industry and, as he plans his work well, he has met with
a gratifying measure of success in his farming operations.
Martin M. Turpen, who is pastor of the Reorganized Church of Latter Day Saints
at Pleasanton, has done excellent work in the religious field and was also
identified with agricultural pursuits in this county for many years. He was born
in Hamilton township, Decatur county, Iowa, August 19, 1853, a son of Aaron and
Lucinda (Miller) Turpen. His parents, who were natives respectively of Kentucky
and of Indiana, removed to Decatur county, Iowa, before the admission of the
state into the Union and the father entered land in Hamilton township. He
cleared his farm and devoted his time to its operation during the remainder of
his life with the exception of four years which he spent in Kansas. He passed
away in 1905, having survived his wife for many years, her demise occurring in
M. Turpen was reared and educated in Hamilton township and remained upon the
homestead until he was eighteen years of age. He then rented a farm, which he
operated until 1900, when he purchased eighty acres of land on sections 15 and
22, Hamilton township. He at once set about improving his property and was
active in the cultivation of his land until 1912, when he rented the place to
his son. In the meantime he had become a leader in the Reorganized Church of
Latter Day Saints and for the past twenty-eight years he has been a minister of
that organization. For a long time he was a traveling missionary and then was
for two years pastor of the church at Centerville, Iowa. At the present time he
has charge of the church at Pleasanton and under his direction the work of its
various departments in being very successfully conducted. He combines the regard
for spiritual things and the religious zeal that are the first qualifications of
a minister with the practical ability that enables him to work out the high
moral teachings of his church into terms of community life.
the 17th of September, 1876, Elder Turpen married Miss Mary E. McNeil, a
daughter of Alex and Elizabeth McNeil, both natives of Indiana. The father was
an early settler of this county and for many years farmed in Burrell township.
He passed away in 1877 but was survived until 1895 by his widow. Elder and Mrs.
Turpen have five children: Claud R., a plasterer and mason residing in Mt. Ayr,
who is married and has three children, Eugene, Stephen and Ruth; Clara who
married L. M. McNeil, a farmer of Mercer county, Missouri, by whom she has three
children, Ellen O., Doris E. and Ray L.; Stephen A., a veterinary surgeon
residing in Quenemo, Osage county, Kansas, who is married and his three
children, Alma, Thelma and Merle; George M., who is manager of the Lamoni
Hardware Company; and David D., who is farming his father's farm. He married
Blanche La Follette and they had become the parents of two children: Mildred B.,
aged four; and a child who died in infancy.
Elder Turpen is a republican and has always taken the interest of a good citizen in public affairs although he was never been active in politics. While he was engaged I farming he was known as an energetic and successful agriculturist but for many years his chief interest has been in his work as a minister of the Gospel and his labors have borne fruit in the deepening of the religious life of the communities in which he has served.