Edward Murphy, a farmer in Hollywood township, is a
native of Minnesota, born in Minneapolis, May 21, 1859, the
son of Edward and Margaret (Wallace)
Murphy, who were both natives of the Emerald Isle, the
former from County Limerick and his wife from
Edward Murphy, the senior, was one of the pioneers of Carver
county, settling here in 1860.
Prior to this he had lived
for several years in New York and New Jersey and had then
come west to Dubuque and from there removed to St. Anthony
where the family resided for about six years. On locating in
Hollywood township he took advantage of pre-emption rights
and secured a homestead, paying one dollar and a quarter an
acre. This land was six miles west of Watertown and lay a
distance from any highway.
Later the Winstead road was built
past the farm. He cleared his land which was heavily
timbered and had it all under cultivation, developing a fine
farm property which is now owned by his son, James Murphy.
He was one of the original members of the Catholic church at
Watertown. His death occurred in his sixty-third year, May
6, 1890. The death of his wife at sixty-three years of age
had preceded his just two years.
They had a family of seven
children, Mary, who lived at home and died at the age of
forty; Katie, the wife of Daniel Keefe of Winstead,
Minnesota; Edward John, a farmer in Hollywood township;
Martin, for thirty-five years employed as engineer in iron
works at Minneapolis; James, living on the old homestead,
and Margaret, who married Frank Sexton, a plumber in
Minneapolis, the son of Thomas Sexton, one of the early
settlers of Carver county and the owner at one time of the
present home of Edward Murphy.
Edward Murphy was reared on
his father's farm and with the exception of five or six
years spent in Minneapolis has always lived in Hollywood
township. As a young man he was employed in farm work or
worked in the pine woods. It was during this period that he
was two years in the employ of Thomas Spain, whose only
child, Johanna, became his wife. Mrs. Murphy was born March
22, 1870, on the farm which is her present home and there
she was reared and married. Her parents, Thomas and Margaret
Spain, were both natives of County Tipperary, Ireland, who
made their first home in this country in New York state.
When the call for troops was made in 1861 Thomas Spain was
among the first to go to the aid of his adopted country, and
after, three months service as a volunteer, he re-enlisted
in the regular army, serving until the close of the war.
Soon after this he was married and in 1869 came to Carver
county and bought the land in section fifteen, of Hollywood
township, which is now occupied by his daughter and
son-in-law, Edward Murphy. At the time of his purchase but a
few acres of the eighty had been cleared and Mr. Spain gave
every effort to the development of his farm and when he had
it well under cultivation added another eighty acres to his
The present farm home was erected by him about
twenty years ago. He died April 25, 1909, seventy-five years
of age. The death of Mrs. Spain had occurred nine years
earlier in her sixty-third year. Mr. Murphy has continued
the improvement of the former Spain farm and has erected
several new buildings. He conducts a profitable milk
business, keeping about twenty cows. Mr. Murphy and his wife
are members of the Catholic church at Watertown where their
parents were communicants. They have eight children, Thomas,
Edward, Michael, Margaret, Mary, Johanna, Katie and Martin.
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