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Below is a family biography from the book, History of Kentucky, Edition 1 by J. H. Battle, W. H. Perrin and G. C. Kniffin and published by F. A. Battey Publishing Company in 1885.  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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HON. JOSEPH M. BIGGER, lawyer, and one of the ablest jurists of the State of Kentucky, was born in Simpson County, Ky., on the 22d day of September, 1824. He received the rudimentary education in the common schools of Barren and Warren Counties, Ky., and in early life conceived a taste for the profession of the law. In order to gratify this inclination, he, in 1846, entered the office of Judge E. I. Bullock, of Hickman, Ky. Under the instruction of this able preceptor, he pursued his legal studies until his admission to the bar, which was granted in 1847. He at once commenced practice in Ballard County, where he remained until 1853, and from whence he came to Paducah, his present home. The legal record of Judge Bigger presents a series of continued successes, until he has attained to the proud distinction of one of the foremost men of Kentucky, a State already famous for able men. In 1858, he was elected to the position of judge of the equity and criminal court, for the First Judicial District of Kentucky, then comprising the area of fifteen counties. In this responsible office he served with acceptance for three years and until the court was abolished as a result of the civil war. In 1866, he was elected to the Kentucky State Senate, to fill an unexpired term, after which he declined a re-election. In 1877, his ability was again recognized by his election to a seat in the lower house of the state legislature, to which he was re-elected in 1879, and in the organization of that body was made Speaker of the House, which position he filled with marked ability. Judge Bigger is of commanding appearance, a man of true culture, and a highly moral and social character. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., having served as Deputy Grand Master and is now Grand Master of that fraternity for the State of Kentucky. He is also a member of high standing in the Masonic fraternity and an official member of the Christian Church. In politics Judge Bigger was an ardent and warm supporter of the Whig party, and so continued until the banner of that noble party was furled and laid at rest. He then joined the Democratic party and has steadfastly supported the candidates and principles of that party ever since. When the Democratic party divided, in that ever memorable contest of 1860, and one wing nominated John C. Breckinridge, and the other Stephen A. Douglas for president, against the much lamented Abraham Lincoln, the nominee of the Republican party, Judge Bigger, although a Kentuckian “to the manner born,” carried out his convictions of what he believed to be right, and gave his earnest support to that great statesman, Stephen A. Douglas, in opposition to that gifted and idolized Kentuckian, John C. Breckinridge. In 1846, in Fulton County, Ky., Judge Bigger was married to Miss Fannie, daughter of Richard Stephens of Fulton County.

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This family biography is one of 165 biographies included in the McCracken County, Kentucky section of the book, The History of Kentucky, Edition 1 published in 1885 by F. A. Battey Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: History of Kentucky, Edition 1

View additional McCracken County, Kentucky family biographies here: McCracken County, Kentucky Biographies

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