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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company.  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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MILTON L. CORTRIGHT, junior member of the firm of Riegel & Cortright, at Bethlehem, was born at Freemansburg, Northampton County, Pa., September 14, 1846. His father, Abraham Cortright, was born in Salem, Luzerne County, Pa., and was engaged some time in coal mining and shipping. He and his brother, N. D. Cortright, were engaged in business at Freemansburg in connection with their enterprise at Mauch Chunk, doing a large business in coal mining and shipping, general merchandise, lumber dealing and boat-building, and they also had a sawmill, located at Freemansburg. The father belonged to the Whig party, and was a member of the Reformed Church. He died in the year 1857, and after his death the business was carried on under the firm name of N. D. Cortright & Co.

The mother of our subject, Elizabeth (Lerch) Cortright, was born in Saucon Valley, this county, and was the daughter of Joseph Lerch, whose occupation was that of a farmer. She located at Bethlehem about the year 1870, and is still a woman of strong constitution, hale, hearty and enjoying life at the age of seventy. The grandfather of Mr. Cortright was one of the “boys of ‘76” who answered to the “drumbeat of the nation.”

Our subject was the eldest of four children, three daughters and one son. He was reared at Freemansburg and attended the public schools there until he was twelve years old, when he came to Bethlehem and clerked for John Lerch, remaining with him until the year 1870. In that year he started in business with Mr. Solt, under the firm name of Cortright & Solt, general merchants. They located on Main Street, at the present site of the Myers Building, and in 1872 they consolidated with Mr. Riegel and became known as Riegel, Cortright & Solt. In 1890 William H. Solt died, and the firm was henceforth known as Riegel & Cortright. They have the largest floor space of any firm in the locality.

Mr. Cortright was married at Seneca Falls, N. Y., in the year 1870, when he took Miss Lizzie Supplee, a native of Philadelphia, as his companion for life. Mr. and Mrs. Cortright have three children, Grace, Florence and Robert. Robert is a member of the Class of ‘95 at the Bethlehem High School. The family residence is at No. 20 South Centre Street.

Mr. Cortright is a member of the School Board from the Second Ward and has filled that position for three years. He belongs to Christ Reformed Church and is serving as Elder and Vice-President of the congregation, and Treasurer of the Sunday-school. He is also a member of the Board of Trade. In political action, belief and sentiment he is a stanch Republican.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the book, Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company. 

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

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