William C. Thompson was born at Greenfield, Highland Co., Ohio, February 6, 1856. His father, John C. Thompson, was superintendent of the public schools of that place at the time of our subject’s birth, but died when he was but a week old. His mother, Lucinda (Craven) Thompson, was a daughter of Rev. Thomas Craven, formerly of Oxford, Ohio, but afterward a resident of Jefferson County, Ind. His grandfather, Joseph Thompson, was a resident of New Jersey, and lived at Monmouth, in that state, until after the birth of our subject’s father. He moved west and settled at Middleton, Ohio, about the year 1818, and afterward removed to Lebanon, Ohio. His father spent his early years on a farm, and then learned the carpenter’s trade, and afterward attended college at Miami University, at Oxford, Ohio, where he graduated in 1843. He followed the profession of teaching until his death. His death left his family in reduced circumstances, and with four small children, the oldest being but eleven years of age, and the youngest but an infant, the subject of this sketch. In September, 1856, his mother removed from Ohio to Lancaster, Jefferson Co., Ind., to take care of her aged parents. He lived there until seventeen years of age, working on a farm in summer and attending district schools in winter. He also attended the College Hill Academy at the same place, for two or three winters, and in the summers of 1871 and 1872, worked as a hired hand on a farm near Greenwood, in this county. In March, 1873, he removed with his mother to Franklin, and immediately began working at the printer’s trade, and continued working at this trade, with the exception of a few months spent in the Franklin high school, until September, 1875, when he entered Franklin College. He continued at college with the exception of teaching a district school one winter, until 1880, when he graduated. In the year 1880-81, he was a tutor in the preparatory department of Franklin College, and at the same time filled the office of the clerk of the city of Franklin, to which office he was elected on the republican ticket in May, 1880. He began the study of law in 1878, during his summer vacation, and was admitted to the bar in September, 1881. In May, 1882, he was elected mayor of the city of Franklin, and served one term in that office, since which time he has been engaged in the practice of law, giving especial attention to abstracts of title. He has also been a member of the board of trustees of Franklin College since 1882, and held the position of secretary of that body for three years. He has also held the position of secretary of the Building, Loan and Savings Association for about three years. He was married October 19, 1882, to Miss Georgia P. Marrs, a former teacher in the public schools of Franklin, and daughter of James A. Marrs, late of Marion County, Ind. He is a member of the Baptist Church, and in politics is a republican.

Transcribed by Cheryl Zufall Parker

Banta, D. D. History of Johnson County, Indiana. Chicago, IL: Brant & Fuller, 1888, page 664.