Just east of Dayton, Ohio and a bit south of Springfield, you’ll find the little village of Yellow Springs. That’s where I was born in the spring of 1822. When I reached the age of twenty- four, I decided it was time to expand my horizons, and I enrolled at Miami University that fall. My friends in the Miami Union Society, and the Fraternity, called me “Thompson,” but I didn’t mind that at all. I had the fortunate opportunity to lead hymns in both the college chapel and the Oxford Presbyterian Church. My faith, you could say, defined my college experience. I even gave my commencement address on “The Influence of Christianity on Civilization.”
Upon leaving my alma mater, I entered work as a minister. I first went to New Albany, Indiana, just across the river from Louisville, but I didn’t stay too long. I migrated back near my fraternal home, to Lebanon, Ohio, about 30 miles east of Oxford. I traveled as far west as Des Moines, Iowa, but I generally stayed pretty close to Old Miami. I resided in New Castle, Indiana until I followed Ardivan into the Chapter Grand in 1873. They brought me back to Lebanon and buried me there.