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Lancaster Thompson

Obituary of Judge John Pinkney Thompson, Lebanon, Kentucky.

Judge J. P. Thompson, one of the oldest and best-known citizens of Lebanon, Ky., died at his home there on January 14 after a long illness. Few men in Marion County were more generally known and esteemed than Judge Thompson. Big in body and brain, kind in disposition, with a pleasant greeting for all, with a record of personal valor proved on the field of battle, with a capacity demonstrated during a long a successful legal career and in the conduct of various responsible positions with which he was honored, he possessed the respect and hearty good will of his neighbors to an extent seldom enjoyed by any citizens.

Joseph Pinkney Thompson was a member of one of the pioneer families of the county. He was born near Raywick August 15, 1838. After graduating at St. Mary's College, he became a member of its faculty and was teaching school there when the war broke out. He went to Tennessee and enlisted with some schoolmates at Red Springs in October, 1861, as a privated in the 13th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry. On September 22, 1862, he was commissioned first lieutenant of Company C; and in April, 1865, when the Tennessee regiments consolidated in North Carolina, he was made captain of Company I, 4th Tennessee Regiment, his company including what remained of the old 2d and 13th Regiments.

He was surrendered at Fort Donelson and held as a prisoner at Camp Butler, Ill., for seven months. He was exchanged at Vicksburg, took part in Sherman's defeat at Chickasaw Bayou, Miss., in December, 1862, and with Gregg's Brigade won fame in the spirited battle of Raymond in May, 1863. He was with Johnston's army at Rocky Face, New Hope Church, Kennesaw Mountain, Peachtree Creek, Decatur, and Atlanta. After suffering a long sickness in a hospital at Macon, he rejoined the army at Duck River, Tenn., and accompanied it to the Carolinas, fighting at Bentonville and surrendering at Greensboro.

At the close of the war Judge Thompson taught school and studied law at Elizabethtown. In 1867 he was admitted to the Lebanon bar, having formed a partnership with Judge Kavanaugh. From 1869 to 1878 he was County Judge of Marion County, and from 1876 to 1880 he was Master Commissioner of the Marion Circuit Court. In 1881 he was elected to the legislature, and for four years he was Chairman of the Kentucky Railroad Commission.

Judge Thompson is survived by his wife, who was Miss Eliza Lancaster, to whom he was married on Febraury 4, 1868, and five children, three sons and two daughters.

SOURCE: Confederate Veteran Magazine, March, 1916.

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