"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.


Torpy, Thomas G. physician and one of the leading citizens of Minocqua, was born in Portland Township, Dodge County, Wis., June 10, 1868, son of Michael and Ann (GRAHAM) TORPY. The parents were natives of Ireland and came to America in their youth; they were married in Portland Township, Dodge County, and settled on a farm there, where they attained considerable prominence in the communty. The mother died at the age of 54 as a result of an injury she had sustained; the father lived to the age of 104. Five children were born to these parents: Mary, now the widow of John MULLINS and residing at Beaver Dam, this state; Catherine, living at Marshall, Wis., widow of John FOLEY; Theresa, who is Mrs. George WHIPPLE and lives at San Jose, Calif.; Thomas G., subject of this sketch; and Michael, who married Theresa GAFFNEY and is operating the home farm in Dodge County. Thomas G. TORPY attended the grade schools of Dodge County and was graduated from the Waterloo High School with the class of 1888. He followed various occupations for the next two years, and in 1890 entered Wayland Academy at Beaver Dam. In order to help pay his expenses while attending this institution he engaged to do chores for Dr. H. B. SEARS, and in his spare time he took up the study of medicine under the tutorship of his employer. In 1892 he entered Rush Medical College at Chicago. He graduated from this school with the class of 1895, and in September of that year he opened an office in Waterloo, Wis., where he practiced his profession until 1898. He came to Minocqua in the latter year and took up his practice here, where he has since followed it continuously except for the years 1911-13, when he was acting physician and surgeon for the Yawkey-Bissell Lumber Co. at Arbor Vitae and made his home there. Dr. TORPY was Minocqua's first resident physician, and during the early days of his practice here his work was arduous indeed. The normal condition of such few roads as existed was what would today be termed impassable, and Dr. TORPY'S work led him far into the jungles of the primeval forest, braving the torrid rays of summer suns and the icy blast of winter in every imaginable kind of conveyance, including row boats, canoes, horse teams, ox teams, and riding horses. Whatever the conditions he never failed to respond to a call, putting all thought to personal comfort aside in his devotion to his great mission of service to mankind, and he won the love and respect of the entire community. Dr. TORPY'S exceptional ability and leadership extends beyond the profession of which he is so able to representative, and he has taken an active and useful part in public affairs. In the spring of 1916 he was elected chairman of the board of Minocqua Township, serving for five years and being by virtue of that office a member of the county board. He has been health officer for many years, and is a stockholder and director in the Bank of Minocqua; for the past 17 years he has been official surgeon for the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad, and he is examiner for several insurance societies. He is a member of the Oneida, Vilas, and Forest Counties Medical Society, of the Wisconsin Medical Society, and of the American Medical Association. He and his family are members of the Catholic Church. Dr. TORPY was married April 29, 1903, to Emma H. BRANDNER, of Waterloo, Wis., and three children have been born to Dr. and Mrs. TORPY: Alma R., born Feb. 6, 1904, now a student in the Milwaukee State Normal School, having graduated from the Minocqua High School; Isabelle Ann, born Oct. 18, 1906; and Catherine L., born Nov. 6, 1916.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 342-343, 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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