AS RECORDED IN:
COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD OF
TOLLAND AND WINDHAM COUNTIES CONNECTICUT.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF PROMINENT AND
REPRESENTATIVE CITIZENS AND OF MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLED FAMILIES
PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903 P. 1184
MARTIN GOMPPER, an old and highly
esteemed citizen of Stafford Springs, Conn., was born Nov. 23, 1834, in Laufen,
Wittenberg, Germany, a son of Christian Gompper, born and bred in Germany to a
farming life, and the proprietor of extensive landed property.
The father married Margaret Shick, and died when his son, John M., was
only about ten years old, his widow dying in her native German home about 1870.
They had the following children: Christina;
Anna; Ludwig, who was drowned
in a flood in Germany; Jonas, who
died in Germany; George;
Christian; and John M. All
these children remained in Germany, except the youngest.
Martin Gompper was born in Germany, as noted above, and had his education in the
schools of his native community. When
he was about fourteen he was employed by scientists in securing the petrified
remains peculiar to certain sections of Germany.
In this work he was very successful, and was employed in it until he
reached the age of twenty years, when rather than join the German army, he came
to this country, sailing from Harve, France, Aug. 30, 1854.
The voyage, which was made on the sailing vessel, “Emma,” lasted
about thirty-five days, and was very rough and stormy from start to finish.
On his arrival in New York city, Mr. Gompper immediately made his way to
Glastonbury, Conn., where he had secured a position as a die sinker in that
place. For a year and a half he was
employed by Supt. Dart, and then going to New Britain, he worked in the
stockinet factory in that city for several years.
There he learned the spinning trade.
At Rockville he worked in the American Mill for a year, and was employed
in Hilliard’s satinet factory at Manchester several years.
At Thompsonville he was working in the carpet factory when it was closed
down; and in 1858 he came to Stafford to work for Charles Fox & Co.,
remaining a year or more, and for the same length of time was employed by the
New England Mill, at Rockville. In
the Hockanum mill he was employed for two years.
In 1861 Mr. Gompper entered the Stafford Hollow Mill, and was in charge
of the dye room for some four years, and at Wilbraham, Mass., he was engaged in
the Ellis mill for some five years. After
the expiration of that period Mr. Gompper came back to Stafford, and has
maintained his residence here to the present time, living a retired life, and
looking after his real estate and building investments.
Several very pretty and convenient houses have been built by him, and
they yield good rentals. Mr. Gompper
attends the Congregational Church, and votes for the best men at election time,
having at one time been a Democrat, but now taking an independent stand.
Gompper was married July 4, 1859, to Catherina Betz, a daughter of Joseph and
Mary Ann (Nagle) Betz, of Stafford, and a native of the same German town with
her husband. To them have come two
children: Louisa, born June 24,
1860, in Rockville, died in Stafford Hollow, Nov. 7, 1863; and Otto, born Oct.
29, 1864, in Stafford, was drowned Aug. 13, 1879, in a pond at Wilbraham, Mass.
Mr. Gompper has always been a hard working man, never neglecting
opportunity to acquire information, and is now remarkably well posted on all
subjects of current interest.
D. Pingel – great-great granddaughter of Cyrus White of Rockville, Ct.
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April 7, 2008
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