Tuesday, November 13, 2012

William Thompson, Jr.

The attached history was written by an unknown author about Kim's great-grandfather:
William Thompson, Jr., oldest son of William Thompson and Matilda Commander, was born in Bountiful, Utah, December 3, 1868.  His grandparents were Thomas Commander, Elizabeth Bunn, John Thompson and Jennette Moore.
His early life was spent in doing what work he could to help support the family.  He had little chance for education.  When he was 17 years old he worked for John E. Clark caring for his driving horses. (He was a great lover of animals.) Later on he worked at Clark Eldridge Wholesale store.  While working there the freight elevator fell to the basement and crushed him beneath it causing a broken back and internal injuries.  He had so much faith he wouldn’t have a doctor, but laid on a board for days without moving.  His back healed and he walked perfectly erect the rest of his life.  At the time of the accident he had a wife and small family.
William Thompson, Jr., was ordained a Deacon on January 21, 1887, by TE Taylor, counselor in the bishopric of the 14th Ward in Salt Lake City.  On October 14, 1887, he was ordained a Teacher, and he was ordained a Priest on October 19, 1888, by TE Taylor in the same ward.  He received the Melchizedek Priesthood as an Elder on February 24, 1890, at the hands of Edward W. Davis in Salt Lake City.  On February 1, 1904, he was ordained to the office of a Seventy by Elder Edward J. Evans.  On November 29, 1914, at the age of 45, he was ordained a High Priest by Elder Frances M. Lyman of the Council of the Twelve.  At the same time he was called to serve as Alternate High Councilman in the Granite Stake.
On October 22, 1891, he married Emma Emilie Gindrup in the Logan Temple.  This marriage was performed by President Joseph F. Merrill.  Emma was the daughter of Sarah Josephine Anderson and John Joachim Gindrup.  The next year with his family he moved to Sugar House at 2006 Terrace Avenue, (later changed to Douglas Avenue).
Ten children were born to them:  Myrtle Emma, 27 Jan 1893; Elva Louise, 16 Sep 1894 (died 23 Aug 1895); Florence Sylvi, 19 Feb 1896; a baby 28 Oct 1897(died shortly after birth); Harold William, 28 Oct 198; Naomi May, 28 Mar 1900; Eloise G., 2 Sep 1901; Raymond John G., 24 Nov 1908; Anona Julia, 2 Jul 1911; Marian Jennette, 25 Nov 1913.  At the time of this writing, Dec. 1953, eight children survive, 6 girls and 2 boys.
In 1904 his brother Elijah built new brick homes for them both at 1154 & 1156 Cleveland Avenue (later changed to Ramona Avenue).  While living here he was called on a mission to the California Mission on March 13, 1906.  He was set apart by elder Seymour B. Young of the First Council of Seventy. The family lived on four dollars a week while he was away and raised what vegetables they had to eat in their own garden.
He experienced the terrible earthquake in San Francisco in 1906.  He was District President at the time and had charge of twenty Elders.  He said the Angels appeared to him in the night twice telling him to get the Elders out of the building.  He did and all were safe before the building fell to the ground.
He was presiding Elder of Parley’s Branch of Sugar House Ward and was President of the YMMIA.  He was also a member of the ward choir, teacher of the Theological class in Sunday School, a School Trustee, and a member of the Granite Stake High Council.  He possessed great faith (inculcated by his mother) and a marvelous power of healing the sick.
Mrs. Angie Hood Earl says it was under his administration that her brother Russel was raised from the dead.  Mrs. Nicol Hood, a close neighbor, always sent for him when there was sickness in her family.
In the year 1909 William Thompson, Paulis Rockwood, and Willard Richards had the first furniture store in Sugar House.  In 1910 the Granite Furniture store was built (his brother Elijah Thompson was the contractor).  He sold his shares or rather took them out in trade getting the family a piano and furniture they needed in the home.
While living in Sugar House Ward he was one of the few brethren chosen to go to the Temple for a second anointing and endowment.  He also had the privilege of going to the upper floor of the Temple every Sunday morning to join in the Prayer Circle, which was considered a high honor.
William owned spirited horses or trotters and used to race on the tracks at Calder’s Park, later known as Wandermere Park, now Nibley Park golf course.  His horses won many races.
In 1914 he went to Southern Utah, along with his brothers John, Elijah and sister Jennette to tak up a homestead.  After one summer they gave up because of lack of water.  (While there his oldest son, Harold, was struck by a bolt of lightening and nearly killed).  He then returned to Sugar House and went into the grocery business until 1917.
In March, 1917, he sold his home in Salt Lake and bought a farm near Blackfoot, Idaho, on the south bank of the Snake River.  When he moved his family to Blackfoot he rode in the freight cars along with his stock.  There was a train wreck enroute and he was badly shaken up and a cow was killed.  Also the furniture in one end of the car was broken and damaged.
In the year of 1918 the Blackfoot and Snake Rivers overflowed and flooded the farms between the rivers.  The family took a few clothes and moved in with a family who lived above the flood area.
While in Blackfoot the family lived in Riverton Ward, where William taught Sunday School.  About 1919 he sold his farm and moved closer to town where they lived in the Second Ward of Blackfoot where her also taught Sunday School.
William J. Beardall, an intimate friend and fellow worker says of him, “I loved that man as my own brother.  He made many friends who were near and dear to him.  He was a wise counselor and very faithful in the performance of his duties.  Our work together was some of the best of my life and when I go to the great beyond I hope we shall be together again.”
William Thompson died October 11, 1922.  His wife died June 8, 1934.  They are buried in the Salt Lake City Cemetery.

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