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CULPEPPER, Hon. John O.

Source: The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol.III   pg.198-9  1923
Author: The History of Florida: Past & Present

CULPEPPER, Hon. JOHN O., judge of Taylor County, is one of the most
constructive citizens of this part of Florida, and for many years a leading
resident of Perry. He conducts the largest insurance business in Taylor
County, and carries on a law practice in the chancery courts. Judge CULPEPPER
was born near Thomasville, Georgia, October 16, 1866, a son of JOHN S.
CULPEPPER; also a native of Georgia, who died in 1900, aged sixty-eight
years. When war broke out between the two sections of the country, JOHN S.
CULPEPPER enlisted in the “Dixie Boys”, a Georgia regiment, and served in the
Confederate army until physical disability invalided him home. A democrat, he
was very active in Thomas County politics. The Baptist Church held his
membership. Originally overseer of a large plantation, he later became a
farmer on his own account. JOHN S. CULPEPPER married Miss DOROTHY CHASTIAN,
born in Thomas County, a member of one of the old families of Georgia. Her
father, THOMAS H. CHASTIAN, came to Thomas County, Georgia, in 1820, and there
became an extensive planter.
Growing up on his father’s farm, Judge CULPEPPER attended the public
schools, and then, desiring further educational advantages, at the age of
twenty years entered the Southern Georgia College at Thomasville, and after
two years at that institution matriculated in the University of Georgia, from
which he was graduated in 1892, with the degree of Bachelor of Philosophy. He
earned the money to defray the expenses of his education. He taught in the
country schools of Thomas County, following which he spent one year teaching
as assistant superintendent of the schools of Quitman, Georgia; four years as
superintendent of the schools of Guyton, Georgia; and one year as
superintendent of the schools of Moultrie, Georgia. In 1897 he went to
Alabama, and during that and the following year he was superintendent of the
schools of Geneva. In 1899 he came to Perry, Florida, as superintendent of
the Taylor County High School, and held that position for three years.
In the meanwhile, during 1900, he became editor and owner of the
Taylor County “Herald”. In 1905 and 1907 he served as secretary of the
Florida State Senate. In 1902 Judge CULPEPPER founded his insurance business
and has since expanded it to very large proportions. In 1908 he was elected
county judge, and has been re-elected three times, and is still the incumbent
of the office. While teaching school he read law under Capt. WILLIAM HAMOND,
of Thomasville, Georgia, and is recognized as an authority on chancery law, in
which branch of his profession he specializes. Early in life he was not
active in politics, but since 1900 he has been a determined factor in the
local democratic party. All constructive movements having for their object
the improvement of Perry or Taylor County have his sincere support, and he has
materially advanced his locality since coming to it. Having been reared on a
farm, he has never lost his liking for agriculture, and carries on farming as
a diversion. Judge CULPEPPER is a mighty fisherman, and has long excelled in
the sport. For a number of years he has been one of the valued Sunday school
teachers of the Baptist Church.
In August, 1902, Judge CULPEPPER was united in marriage with Miss
DAISY MORSE, of Quitman, Georgia, a daughter of O.C. and LUTIE (WOOTEN)
MORSE. O.C. MORSE was a farmer of Brooks County, Georgia, an active man in
his community, and a zealous member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. By
birth he was a Pennsylvanian, but left his native state for Georgia many years
ago. He died in 1912, aged fifty-five years. His widow, who was born in
Brooks County, Georgia, belongs to one of the old families of that state. She
is living at Perry, Florida. Mrs. CULPEPPER is a lady of much culture, and is
active in church and club circles. Judge and Mrs. CULPEPPER have four
children, namely: LUCILE, BROWARD, DOROTHY and FRANK. During the late war
Mr. CULPEPPER made an admirable record, and served on the local draft board,
was chairman of the legal advisory board, and active in all of the drives for
all purposes.





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