"History of Lincoln, Oneida, and Vilas Counties Wisconsin"

Compiled by George O.Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others. Printed in 1924 by H.C.Cooper. Jr. & Co., Minneapoli-Winona MN. ill. 787 pages. The first two hundred pages are history of the three counties, the remainder of the book is biographies.


Murphy, William for many years of well-known and popular resident of Eagle River, Vilas County, but now passed away, was born at Montello, Marquette County, Wis., Oct. 15, 1854. He grew to manhood in his native place, learning the trade of blacksmith, which he followed in that vicinity for a few years, and then went to Merrill where men of that trade were in great demand by lumbermen at their logging camps. He was employed by various concerns and kept journeying northward as fast as the timber was cut until in 1882 he arrived at Eagle River. As not much of the virgin timber had yet been cut here, he worked at his trade in this vicinity for several years, while logging was the chief industry, and, in fact, made this place his permanent home. He was always a man in whom much confidence was placed and for many years he served in an official capacity. In the early history of the county he was under-sheriff under T. I LOUGHLIN and in 1907 was elected sheriff, being one of the three Democratic sheriffs elected in the state that year. At the conclusion of his term he was appointed village marshal and held that position until his last illness began. He took a deep interest in the affairs of the community and while in good health was always ready to befriend every worthy cause of appeal. His death on May 15, 1921, deprived the village of one of its best and most popular citizens. He was an interested member of the Woodmen and Royal Neighbors lodges, both organizations attending his funeral in a body, as well as a large concourse of friends and neighbors not belonging to those orders. Mr. MURPHY was married July 1, 1887, in Wausau, Wis., to Carrie MOWRY, who was born in Pennsylvania, Oct. 15, 1864, daughter of Edwin and Mary (LA BOR) MOWRY. Her parents were natives respectively of Pennsylvania and New York State. They were married in the East and came to Wisconsin in 1865, settling first at Northport, Waupaca County, but soon moving to a farm near Ogdensburg, that county, where they remained until 1881. They then moved to Merrill, Lincoln County, where Mr. MOWRY operated a restaurant for a short time and afterwards became a timber cruiser and estimator, which occupation he followed for many years. Both he and his wife are now deceased. Their daughter Carrie (Mrs. MURPHY) as a girl attended school in Ogdensburg and remained at home until 1885, in wich year she came to Eagle River, where she has since made her home. Mr. and Mrs. MURPHY had three children: two daughters, Marie and Lucille, who preceded their father in death, and one son, William G., who resides in Milwaukee. Mr. MURPHY also left a brother, John, of Montello, and a sister, Mr. Marie RULE, of Wallace, Idaho.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 654; History of Lincoln, Oneida and Vilas Counties Wisconsin; Compiled by George O. Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others 1924, H. C. Cooper, Jr. & Co

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