IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.


Richard Humphry, a retired farmer who is now making his home in the village of Monona, Clayton County, still owns a tract of twenty acres of land which is within the corporate limits of the place. For about thirty successive years he has made his home in this county with the exception of two years when he was in California. For a number of years he engaged in the cultivation of a fine farm of two hundred acres in Giard Township, which he is still the possessor of, now renting the same. In various local township offices he has acquitted himself to the satisfaction of all, and numbers a host of warm friends in this locality, which has been his home for so many years.

A native of the Emerald Isle, our subject was born in County Limerick, November 25, 1835, being a son of Richard and Mary (Coffee) Humphry, natives of Limerick and County Tipperary, respectively. The parents came to America with their family in 1847, and the father died in Quebec aged fifty-seven years. His wife, who survived him for a number of years, departed this life in Monona when in her sixty-eighth year. By her marriage she became the mother of five sons and two daughters, of whom Richard is the fourth in order of birth.

A lad of twelve years when he arrived in the United States, Richard Humphry went to Wisconsin and then to Clayton County in 1852, after a sojourn of a year and a-half in Canada. Locating on an unimproved farm in Monona Township, he engaged in its cultivation for five years in company with the other members of the family. Later they divided the farm and in 1859 our subject started for the Pacific Slope, going across the plains with ox-teams by way of Salt Lake City. Arriving in Placerville, Cal., he there engaged in mining for three years, and in 1862 returned to this county by way of the Isthmus of Panama and New York City. In 1866 Mr. Humphry once more returned to the Golden State, where he remained for two years and then embarked for home by the same route. It was then that he took up his farm of two hundred acres in Giard Township and settled down to devote his active life to its cultivation and development. He made a good farm of the place, greatly increasing its value, and this old homestead he has never had the heart to part with, but now leases it to tenants. For a period of two years he was engaged in the grain business, making shipments to Chicago, Milwaukee and other points.

In 1867 Mr. Humphry married Honora Looney, a native of Amboy, Ill., born July 3, 1851. Her father, John Looney, was a native of Ireland and one of the early settlers in the Prairie State. Mr. and Mrs. Humphry have two children, Marian, who was born in this county June 24, 1868, and Richard B., whose birth occurred March 22, 1870. The daughter, who is a fine musician, attended St. Mary's Institute of Prairie du Chien, Wis., for some time, there receiving a good education. The son is a graduate from the Law Department of Iowa State University and is a young man of promise.

For four years Richard Humphry was a Township Trustee and has also served as School Director, He is one of the stockholders in the Clayton County Farmers' Mutual Insurance Company. In his political convictions he is a Democrat and a worker in the cause.

source: Portrait andBiographical Record of Dubuque, Jones and Clayton Counties;Chicago: Chapman Pub. Co., 1894; pgs. 395-396
-transcribed by Becky Teubner

Returnto 1894 Biographies Index