Obituary Details

Josephine C. Thorp

(04/30/1842 - 01/18/1912)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 02/22/1912

A month ago the sad news was telegraphed from California that another of Wyoming's pioneers and early settlers had laid down her life work and crossed the Great Divide. To such as she, the Wyoming of today owes a debt of deep gratitude, because by their indomitable pluck, push, fearlessness and perseverance they opened up and made possible the settlement of this great commonwealth.  Mrs. Josephine C. Thorp was a most estimable woman, a loyal friend and neighbor and wherever she went left a strong impress of her individuality and it can be truly said that the good she did for the west in general and Wyoming in particular, will live forever. Her memory will long and lovingly remain in the hearts of those who knew her best.

Josephine C. Thorp (nee Brooks) was born at Van Buren, Ind., April 30, 1842, and died at Los Angeles, California, January 18, 1912, aged 69 years, 8 months and 18 days. She was only a little over two years of age when her parents emigrated from Indiana to Wisconsin, traveling by ox-team, where they lived until 1866, when, being invited with other eastern teachers to go to Omaha, she did so and there organized and taught in the first graded schools of that city. She remained in Omaha for over two years but still actuated by the pioneer spirit and still looking towards the golden west, she journeyed to Corrine, Utah, and there Mrs. Thorp had the distinction and honor of teaching in the first gentile school in the territory of Utah. In 1873 she was married at Evanston, Wyo., to Russell Thorp, and they immediately took up their residence at Cheyenne where they continued to reside for a number of years and here Russell Thorp, Jr., was born. From Cheyenne Mr. Thorp operated the Cheyenne and Black Hills stage line, which was conducted with great peril to the drivers and passengers, and with many noteworthy incidents and hair-breadth escapes, as "road-agents" and Indians were numerous in those days. In 1883 the family moved to the Rawhide Buttes ranch, on the Black Hills trail, and here they lived until very recent years. During their residence at the Buttes ranch Mr. Thorp died, September 3, 1898. It is worthy of note that they were always on the frontier, pushing forward and blazing the trail for those who should come after. About five or six years ago, Mrs. Thorp and son Russell, purchased and moved to the Chase ranch just east of Lusk, where the former usually spent her summers; her winter were generally passed in California, with an occasional visit to Wisconsin.

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Obituary Thorp, Russell (10/22/1844 - 09/03/1898) View Record
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