3 May 2005
Source: Portrait & Biographical Album of Whiteside County, IL
Originally published 1885 Chapman Bros., Chicago, IL
Transcribed by: Becky Jones
Richard Thompson, the pioneer of this county, and a prosperous farmer residing on section 11, Portland Township, owning 240 acres, is a son of Robert and Lydia (Graham) Thompson, and was born in County Monaghan, Ireland, March 19, 1828. When six years of age the family came to the United States, locating in Cleveland, Ohio. Two years later they came to this county. His father started for this State and came to Chicago via the lakes, and on the way he met Guy Ray, Hiram Harmon and others, and they hired a team and drove to Prophetstown, this county. This was in the fall of 1836, and his father bought a claim of 200 acres of land of Asa Crook, and when the land came into market he bought it of the Government, and added to his original purchase until he had a fine farm of over 300 acres, where his two sons, John R. and Hiram C., now reside. The father went back to Ohio after getting his claim and moved his family to Chicago, where he remained until the next summer and then came to the claim he had purchased, bringing with him his furniture and family with a team. The father was a carpenter and worked at his trade in Chicago during the winter he remained there. The village was then in its infancy, and no one realized the future in store for it. The father died on the old homestead, as likewise did the mother.
Mr. Thompson, the subject of this biographical notice, remained on the parental homestead until he had attained the age of 23 years, when he received 100 acres as an inheritance from his father, and by energetic effort and good judgment he has not only succeeded in placing the land under a good state of cultivation, but has added 80 acres to the original tract. He has some nice graded Short-Horns, 25 to 30 head, also 14 to 20 horses and some 30 head of hogs.
Mr. Thompson was united in marriage in Prophetstown, this county, June 19, 1852, to Miss Lovina Williams. She is a daughter of Calvin and Sally (Hill) Williams, and was born Jan. 12, 1835, in Detroit, Mich. Of seven children born of their union, in this township, the following is the record: Robert E. was born March 24, 1853, and is a farmer residing in Portland Township; Nathan C. was born Jan. 18, 1855, and is a farmer residing near Des Moines, Iowa; Fred. G., May 19, 1857; Frank D. was born Oct 28, 1860; Grace M., May 7, 1867; Edwin R., Nov. 17, 1870; Rosa L., Oct. 1, 1874. Robert E. married Lora E. Wilson, March 12, 1876, and they have three children, --Jennie, Zaidee and Calvin.