Farmwoman Edith J. Thomson Sprout was born near Kingsley, in northern Iowa, November 4, 1895. She, her parents and her three siblings lived on a farm there until 1910, when the ill-health of her father precipitated a move to South Dakota. There the family operated a succession of general stores before returning to farming. Edith Thomson graduated from high school in Salem, South Dakota, in 1913. She taught intermittently while attending a two-year teacher's training course at Dakota Wesleyan in Mitchell, South Dakota, where she graduated in 1916. She taught until her mother's death, after which she returned to keep house for her father. She then taught for one year before marrying LeRoy Sprout on December 25, 1919. After their marriage, they followed the Sprout family to Palo Alto County, Iowa. LeRoy and Edith Sprout farmed in five different locations in that county for twenty-six years before moving to Emmetsburg, Iowa, in 1945.