Rankin Family History Project

Goodspeed's History of Southeast Missouri, 1888
Thorpe, Pg. 732

Provided to the publishers of Goodspeed's by grandsons Lewis and Oliver Thorpe, this account contains a few inaccuracies.   These are highlighted and explained below.

Oliver Thorpe and Lewis Thorpe, brothers, who reside on a nice farm in Bois Brule Township, Perry County, Missouri, are sons of Lewis and Elvretta (Phillips) Thorpe.  Their grandfather, Joel Thorpe, a native of England and a member of an old and aristocratic family, came to America about 1790, and located in Connecticut, where he married. He served in the US Army during the War of 1812, and was later killed by the Indians.

His children were Basil, Lewis, Dayton, Warren, Phares, Julia and Diantha.  Basil served in the US Army during the Mexican War, in which he was wounded.   After the war, and healing of his wound, he became a resident of Ohio, and was located on the shore of Lake Erie.

For a number of years prior to his marriage, Lewis was a sailor on Lake Erie, and after coming West was engaged in carrying produce on a flat-boat down the Mississippi River to New Orleans. He came to Missouri about 1818, and 3 years later married to Anna Preston, who died having borne several children, none of whom are now living. Mr. Thorpe afterward married Elvetta Phillips, who is yet living, aged 65 years; to them were born the following children:

Sarah (Mrs. William E. Rhodes), Joel (who married Margaret Manning), Martha (Mrs. James B. Davis, Caroline (Mrs. James Bradham), Oliver (single), Henry L. (married Columbia A. Pearson).

The family first lived below Allens Landing on which land Mr. Thorpe entered and improved, and upon which his first wife and her children died.

Oliver was born after the family removed to the highland and now resides on the homestead, one of the best known bachelors in the county.

The death of Louis Thorpe occurred on 01 May 1859, and his widow later became the wife of James A. Burns, who died in 1873. By this marriage she was the mother of two daughters, Rebecca A. (wife of Henry Richard Killian, and Victoria (wife of George Killian).

Mrs. Thorpe was the widow of Joseph Sadler when she became the wife of Louis Thorpe and was the mother of the following children:

Elizabeth (wid Frederick Layton), James J. (who was a soldier in the late war).

Besides fanning interests the Thorpe bros own and operate a saw mill located on their farm. They are men of enterprise & integrity, who are respected by all who know them.

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"Their grandfather, Joel Thorpe, a native of England..."
"[Joel Thorpe] came to America about 1790"

Joel Thorpe was the 6th generation of Thorpes in New Haven, Connecticut.

"[Joel Thorpe]served in the US Army during the War of 1812, and was later killed by the Indians"

He was killed at the Battle of Lundy's Lane, 25 July 1814.  The grandsons may have been confused.  The British with the help of the Indians, burned Buffalo in December 1813.  Joel Thorpe's wife, Sarah Dayton, and her children escaped and made their way back to Ohio.

"Basil served in the US Army during the Mexican War..."

"Bezaleel" was in the Ohio militia during the war of 1812.  Whether he actual served in the US Army during the Mexican War has yet to be discovered.

"[Lewis Thorpe] came to Missouri about 1818, and 3 years later married to Anna Preston..."

The year 1818 is correct, but Lewis and Ann Preston probably married about 1819.  Their first child was born in 1820.

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The Rankin Family History Project began in 1997 with a simple 3 generation family chart.  When our grandmother found out we were researching our family tree, she loaned us her copy of Maryland Catholics on the Frontier by Timothy J. O'Rourke which helped us discover our St. Louis & Perry County roots.  We are also doing research in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

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Rankin Family History Project     Sonoma County, California

Updated 10 January 2000
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