Thompson House: an "Endangered Historic Place"

8th grade students of Trenton, Missouri at the Thompson House in Grundy County learned about life in early Missouri by helping to clean and excavate. Persons interested in learning more about what they found may visit

Missouri Preservation announced its List of Most Endangered Historic Places for 2011 on Tuesday, June 7, 2011 placing the William Preston Thompson house in Grundy County fifth on the list. The slate of endangered sites was unveiled at a Missouri Preservation Press Conference, held at the Oak Grove Mausoleum St. Louis County, which itself is on the 2011 List of Most Endangered Historic Places.   The Most Endangered Historic Places, one of Missouri Preservation’s most visible programs, calls much needed attention to threatened historic resources throughout the state.  The Most Endangered Program annually highlights historic resources that are “at risk.”   Each year Missouri Preservation solicits nominations from around the State, evaluates the merits of the submissions, and announces the “Most Endangered.”  Throughout the year, Missouri Preservation provides technical assistance, advocacy, and planning support for the listed properties.

The William P. Thompson House (Grundy County) at the time of its construction c.1834 was first situated in Carroll County. The house became a part of Livingston County after county lines changed. Another change of county lines resulted in the formation of Grundy County from Livingston County, placing the house lastly in Grundy County. The Thompson House is the oldest known standing building in Grundy County. Located in the vicinity of Trenton, this brick and stone home, known as an “I” House, was constructed of handmade bricks fired on the property.  The estate originally included this substantial home (by 1834 standards), a slave quarters, the family cemetery and an in-ground food storage structure, which measured 12 feet by 25 feet with a vaulted stone roof.  One room of the house was used as a medical office by Dr. Thompson, who traveled widely throughout northwestern Missouri practicing medicine.  The home was also reported to be a social gathering place for the community, with its circular carriage drive and finely appointed rooms.  The Thompson tract was acquired by the Missouri State Parks Department and incorporated as a part of Crowder State Park some years ago.  The house, its outbuildings and other structures have suffered severely from abandonment and lack of care and maintenance.  It was discovered in 2009 that the Park system had decided to preserve and interpret the Thompson House site as a ruin.   Members of “The Friends of the Thompson House” organization, a non-profit Missouri corporation, have tirelessly advocated for the restoration of this home and through their efforts have successfully gained title to the house and adjoining acreage. The organization so far has raised $40,000.00 to put towards the restoration project.  Realizing that this is far shy of the amount needed for restoration, the group hopes that they will be able to raise additional interest and funds through the designation of the Thompson House on the Missouri Preservation’s list of Most Endangered Historic Places. Community interest has also increased due to the efforts of the local 8th grade students at Trenton Middle School. The Social Studies Class focused their efforts on studying about the house, its occupants and early life in Missouri.

Persons interested in more information about the group’s goals, efforts and progress can visit Persons interested in contributing financially can do so at