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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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JAMES E. BREADING (deceased), son of Judge Nathaniel and Mary (Ewing) Breading, was born on Tower Hill farm, Luzerne township, Fayette county, Pa., Oct. 19, 1789. When quite young he entered upon his long career as a merchant, at New Haven, in his native county, then the center of the largest and almost only iron interest west of the mountains. He then removed to Brownsville, where he pursued the same business until the death of his father made it necessary for him to take charge of the Tower Hill farm, in 1821. In 1829 he removed to Pittsburgh, where, in connection with his brother-in-law, George Hogg, and William Hogg (the uncle of George Hogg, both of Brownsville), he embarked as a pioneer in the wholesale trade in dry goods and groceries. This was the beginning in this county of a life of usefulness in the business enterprises of Pittsburgh and vicinity. Here, by his recognized character for honesty and integrity, and his remarkable business capacity, he was eminently successful, securing the confidence and respect of a large community with which he had business relations. He was for many years connected with a large mercantile establishment at St. Louis, as silent partner, holding the leading position in the house. Mr. Breading assisted Mr. Robert Dalzell in establishing the first iron-works at Sharpsburg, Pa., and was more or less connected with the iron interest here for many years. In connection with William and George Hogg he established Dalzell, Taylor & Co., in the grocery business, in 1836, an enterprise that was successfully conducted for many years. In his earlier years Mr. Breading engaged in merchandising at New Haven, his partner being James Blaine, grandfather of James G. Blaine. He retired some years before his death to enjoy that rest in the evening of his days to which his long life of activity entitled him. He was connected with the commissary department during Gen. (afterward President) William H. Harrison’s campaign against Tecumseh and his braves.

He was married in 1820, and died without issue, in Allegheny City, Nov. 19, 1863, leaving to his wife his whole estate, which was quite large. His wife was Elizabeth Ewing, a daughter of William and Mary (Conwell) Ewing, natives of Luzerne township, Fayette county. Mrs. Breading was born July 9, 1799, and now resides at Emsworth, near Pittsburgh, passing her years in domestic quiet, her life being now given, as her earlier days were, in a great measure, to literally doing good to others and proving herself a good Samaritan, providing a home for the poor of her household, and commanding the respect and affections of all who know her. Her father and her husband’s father were gentlemen of great force of character, very prominent in the growth and common welfare of the country in their days.

Mrs. Breading was one of the (originators of the Home of the Friendless in Allegheny City, Pa., which institution has been of great service in relieving the poor and friendless and providing a refuge for the many unfortunate and homeless children, and those of our soldiers of the late war in particular.

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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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