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Below is a family biography included in the book, Portrait and Biographical Record of Johnson and Pettis County Missouri published by Chapman Publishing Company in 1895.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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GEORGE O. TALPEY. The biographies of useful and honorable men who have risen by their own exertions from poverty and obscurity to prosperity and success furnish an inspiring and ennobling study, their direct tendency being to reproduce the excellence they record. It is for this reason, partly, that it affords the biographical writer especial pleasure to present a brief outline of the life of Mr. Talpey, widely known as the President of the Bank of Knobnoster. Starting in life without capital and beginning work as a farm laborer for $12 per month, he has by force of character and determination risen to an enviable position among his fellow-men. He deservedly ranks as one of the best citizens of Knobnoster, and one who, by his strict sense of probity and honor, has won the position for himself.

Referring to the personal history of Mr. Talpey, we find that he is a native of Athens, Ohio, and was born February 7, 1850. He is the fourth in the family of Ebenezer P. and Persis H. (Steadman) Talpey, natives respectively of Maine and Ohio. His father, who went to Ohio at an early age, was for some years prominently identified with the business enterprises of Hocking County. He died there December 31, 1862. His wife is still living and is now seventy-five years of age.

Owing to poor health in boyhood, our subject was not able to enjoy even such inferior educational advantages as the common schools afforded. His education has been mainly self acquired, he being a man of close observation, a thoughtful reader and well informed upon general topics. At the age of sixteen he left Ohio and came to Knobnoster, Mo., where he was employed on a farm for two years. In 1868 he went still further West and, settling in Wyoming, was employed as Deputy Postmaster at Laramie for over a year. Later he was chosen Enrolling Clerk of the House of Representatives of the first Legislature elected in the territory. In April, 1870, in company with his elder brother, he went to Texas and from there drove a herd of cattle to Colorado, where he remained for one year. He then returned to Knobnoster, and has resided in this place continuously since that time.

With the history of Knobnoster Mr. Talpey has been intimately connected since 1871. He has engaged in the drug business here and has also held an interest in the mills at this point. In 1884 he became President of the Bank of Knobnoster, and has since been at the head of this flourishing financial institution. The bank is one of the solid concerns of the county and has the confidence of the people of this section. It has withstood severe depression and disastrous panics that have proved fatal to other concerns seemingly its equal in strength. That it has done so is largely due to the tact, business ability and energy of its efficient President.

August 20, 1873, Mr. Talpey married Miss Annie, daughter of Addison and Emma (Snell) Nichols, natives of Kentucky, but later residents of Johnson County, Mo., where Mrs. Talpey was born. By her marriage she has become the mother of three sons. Arthur, the second-born, died at the age of eighteen months. George Wilbur passed away at the age of nine years. James R., the only surviving son, is at present a student in the Missouri Dental College at St. Louis. In their religious belief Mr. and Mrs. Talpey are members of the Presbyterian Church. Socially he is identified with Twin Mound Lodge No. 273, K. of P., at Knobnoster, and was the first Chancellor of the lodge. He is opposed to monopolies of all kinds, and consequently is in hearty sympathy with the principles of the Democratic party, which he upholds under all circumstances. Though an active worker in the party, he has never been an aspirant for official honors, but prefers to devote his attention entirely to business. As a citizen he is interested in every measure that promises to promote the welfare of the people.

Mr. Talpey is a man whose life has been eminently successful, but whose success has been achieved by energy, perseverance and shrewd business qualities. In his youth he was disciplined in a hard school, but it taught him habits of self-reliance that were of service to him in every subsequent step in life. He is known for his sound and careful judgment as a business man, for his energy and capability, and for his regard for fairness, honesty and integrity. By his indomitable will, directed by a noble purpose, he has advanced step by step, until he has attained his present honorable position, and can hand down the noblest legacy man can bequeath to posterity — a successful life.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the Johnson County, Missouri portion of the book,  Portrait and Biographical Record of Johnson and Pettis County Missouri published in 1895 by Chapman Publishing Co.  For the complete description, click here: Johnson County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Johnson County, Missouri family biographies here: Johnson County, Missouri Biographies

View a map of 1904 Johnson County, Missouri here: Johnson County, Missouri Map

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