This well-known citizen of Cadiz, Harrison County, well represents the first quarter of the nineteenth century in his section. He was born in Cadiz Township, Harrison CO., Ohio, March 3, 1818. His father, David Thompson, was a native of County Tyrone, Ireland, whence, when a lad of nineteen, he came to America in 1792, settling near Chambersburg, Penn., where he became a farmer. In his native land he had learned the trade of a weaver, but this he entirely discarded for the more pleasant pursuits of agriculture. He soon met, loved and married Miss Martha Gift, a native of Pennsylvania, of German parentage, and some time after his marriage he was chosen keeper of the Franklin County Infirmary, which position he held some five years. In the meantime his aged father, Joseph Thompson, who had come with him to America, died in PennsyIvania, and David and his wife removed, in 1814, to what is now Harrison County, Ohio, where he purchased, at six dollars per acre, 260 acres of land situated about one mile north of the town of Cadiz. The place was but partly improved, and much hard labor did they expend upon it to bring it to the high state of cultivation, in which they left it at their death. In 1843. having reached the age of sixty-five years, the faithful wife closed her eyes for the last time on earth. She had borne ten children, named as follows: Joseph, deceased; Elizabeth, Mrs. William McFadden, residing in Iowa; Mary, Mrs. Joseph McFadden, in Cadiz Township; David, deceased; John, who died in Washington County, Iowa; Katherine, Mrs. John Sharp, of Holmes County, Ohio; Martha, deceased wife of Adam Dunlap; Rachel, Mrs. S. Atkinson, in Holmes County, Ohio; James, our subject, and Sophia, Mrs. John Hitchcock, deceased. After the death of his wife Mr. Thompson made his home with his son James, until his own summons came in 1868, when, at the extreme age of ninety-six years, he too was called from earth. Himself and wife had been many years members of the Union Reformed Church.
James Thompson, a farmer's son as he was, had early in life to bear the yoke of labor, aiding to improve and build up the farm. His opportunities for a school education were limited to the meager facilities afforded by the old log school-house. In 1848 he married Miss Margaret, daughter of William and Mary (Crabb) Croskey, of Harrison County, the former of whom had come to the county when a lad of seven years. His father, Robert Croskey, moved to Ohio from Washington County, Penn., in 1812, and settled in the woods of what is now Green Township, Harrison County, and there "not a stick of timber had been cut by white men within five miles." Robert was an Irishman by birth, and had come to make a home in the New World, landing at Williamsport, Md., on the day of the celebrated "Boston Tea Party," which led so directly to the Revolutionary War. In Jefferson County, Ohio, William Croskey married Mary Crabb. In 1873, at the age of seventy-eight years, he died, and since then the widowed mother has made her home with her son, John, on the old farm, and although crippled some fifteen years ago by a fall, and now eighty-nine years of age, she enjoys comparatively good health. She is the mother of nine children, viz.: Robert deceased; Margaret, Mrs. James Thompson; Henry, in McLean County, Ill.; Anna, Mrs. John Clifford, in Green Township, Harrison County; Mary, Mrs. George McFadden; Sarah, Mrs. Thomas Groves, of Jefferson County; John; one that died in infancy, and William.
After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Thompson made their home in Cadiz Township, on the old Thompson homestead, until 1889 when, feeling that younger hands should guide the plow and perform the labor of the farm, they came to the town of Cadiz, where they purchased and improved a beautiful home, situated not far from the Presbyterian Church, of which they Are both members. The record of their children is as follows: Mary Emma died at the age of sixteen years; Martha Elizabeth is now Mrs. A. W. McDonald, of Pittsburgh, Penn.; Anna Caroline is Mrs. W. H. Arnold, in Cadiz; David is deceased. This aged couple, respected by all, loved by many, having for more than forty years sailed together on life's ocean, are now patiently awaiting the time when the all-seeing Pilot shall guide their bark into the harbor of rest, whose waters wash the shores of Eternity.
Commemorative biographical record of the counties of Harrison and Carrol, Ohio. By J. H. Beers, 1891