Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The Big Bend Country, embracing
Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties, State of Washington",
published by Western Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
HUGH L. THOMPSON, who resides
about six miles southeast from Edwall, is one of the early pioneers of
the northwest. As early as 1852, he came to Oregon with his parents
and since that time he has resided on the Pacific coast. He was born
in Newton county, Missouri, on November 2, 1844. His father, Mercer
Thompson, was born in Clay county, Kentucky, emigrated to Missouri and
in 1849 crossed the plains to California. He returned to Missouri
in the winter of 1851-2 and in the spring of 1852, with his family, consisting
of his wife and four children, the oldest of whom was seven years, crossed
the plains again, settling in Oregon. He there engaged in farming
and stock raising for some time and also supplied several mining camps
with provisions. His death occurred on April 16, 1876. The
mother of our subject, Sarah W. (Denagree) Thompson, was born in Kentucky
and died in Oregon in September, 1891. The train in which Mr. Thompson
crossed the plains, consisted of about one hundred grown people, besides
a good many children. They started from Newton county, Missouri,
on the 20th of March, 1852. His father was captain and so wisely
handled affairs that the entire train landed in the Willamette valley about
the middle of September without any special incident or loss. However,
two cases of cholera occurred on the road but the father having read medicine
in early life attended them both until their recovery. At different
times, they discovered fresh signs of Indian massacres on the road, as
the train proceeded, but they had no difficulty. Our subject continued
with his father until 1864, both in working on the farm and in freighting
to the mining camps in Idaho and western Oregon. He was one of the
first men to pull freight into the Boise Basin, during the boom times,
and provisions cost one dollar per pound. After that, he went to
farming and rented land, then purchased the same, making it his home until
1886. After this, we see him in Umatilla county, where he remained
until the fall of 1895. He removed from that place to Idaho and then
to British Columbia, remaining in the last place four years, there giving
his attention to prospecting and mining. He returned to the United
States, locating in Douglas county and from there moved to his present
place in 1902. He does not own the land where he resides but has
farmed about two sections. He owns one section of land in Canada
and the Indian Head country and has a homestead near Trinidad, Douglas
county. He has a full equipment of farm machinery, horses and so
forth, to operate the large tract of land, under his care and is a well
known citizen. Of all the people who crossed the plains with him,
our subject knows of but three still living. They are his aunt, Mrs.
Elizabeth (Thompson) Walker, and his cousins, Louis Sullens and W. J. Thompson.
Mr. Thompson has the following brothers and sisters, A. N., L. G., Mrs.
Amanda Taylor, J. L., and Mrs. Alice Bullein.
On December, 28, 1864, in Linn county, Oregon,
Mr. Thompson married Miss Sarah J. McCormick, who died at Athena, on January
29, 1889. Her father, William McCormick, was born in Pennsylvania
and came to Oregon in 1853, where he died. Mrs. Thompson has the
following brothers and sisters, Mrs. Mary Davis, John E., William, Mrs.
Anna McKune, Mrs. Grace Covey, Nebbin, and Lena. To Mr. and Mrs.
Thompson, ten children have been born: Edgar D., who died March 27, 1903,
aged thirty-seven; William M., Walter C., Joseph C., Frances E., Mrs. Evelyn
Thompson, Anna L., Hubert M., Robert M., and Ethel A. Mr. Thompson
used to be city marshal of Athena and is a member of the I. O. O. F.
He is a man of ability, a genuine frontiersman and the recipient of the
good will of his fellows.