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Below is a family biography included in the History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania published in 1889 by A. Warner & Co.   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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HENRY WILKINS BIGLEY, retired, post-office Logan’s Ferry, was born in Franklin township, this county, in 1832, son of Phillip and Mary (Esteft) Bigley, natives of Clarion county, Pa. The father died about 1867, aged seventy-eight years, and the mother in 1856, aged fifty-one years, both members of the Presbyterian Church. The grandfather of H. W. Bigley was Phillip Bigley. The subject of this sketch received his education at the place of his birth, and at the age of fourteen years sailed on the first iron-clad steamer that left Pittsburgh via the gulf and Red river for the Rocky mountains, carrying provisions to the standing army. He was eight years on the Red river, then returned to Pittsburgh, and ran on the Allegheny and Ohio rivers as pilot, from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati, until 1882, when he retired. He was married, in 1850, to Maria, daughter of Samuel and Catharine (McMillen) Hosick, early settlers in East Deer township. Twelve children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Bigley, four of whom are living: Samuel Joseph, Viola (Mrs. Oliver Fulton Katz), Isabella (Mrs. William Lyons), and Harry, in Verona. Four of the family died in October, 1877, of diphtheria, their names being Flora, Stewart W., Melissa and Foster, aged seventeen, fourteen, twelve and nine years, respectively; four others died under two years of age. Mr. and Mrs. Bigley are members of Alice Cary Lodge, Daughters of Rebekah, of Pittsburgh, and of the Presbyterian Church at Parnassus. Mr. Bigley is a member of the I. O. O. F. and the republican party. March 17, 1865, his house and barn, with all their effects, were swept away by the flood, and all was lost save one trunk of clothing. This involved a loss of several thousand dollars, but Mr. Bigley, being a resolute man, began anew, and has since prospered in every business undertaking.

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This family biography is one of 2,156 biographies included in the History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania published in 1889 by A. Warner & Co.

View additional Allegheny County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Allegheny County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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