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Noah Bigley
October 2, 1817–August 4, 1897
Death of a Jones County Pioneer

Noah Bigley, one of the early settlers of Jones County, died at noon, yesterday at his home in Wayne Township, Which has been the scene of his labors for nearly forty years. The cause of his demise was brain trouble, He was also afflicted with heart trouble of which he had previously had several attacks.
Mr. Bigley was one of the founders of Jones county, for his name has been connected with the history of the county every since its organization. in his death Jones County loses a time honored pioneer, and highly esteemed citizen.
If he had lived until the second day of October next, Mr. Bigley would have celebrated his eightieth birthday. He was a native of Pennsylvania and was born in Beaver county that state, in the year 1817. His parents were both of Pennsylvania nativity, and his father was a boatman on the Ohio River, was drowned in 1820. Mr. Bigley was the youngest of five children, three boys and two girls, and is the last member of that family circle to be called from this earth. He was three years of age at the time of his fathers death, and although he was obliged, early in life, to make his own way in the world, obtained the advantages of a common school education. He was reared on the farm and remained there until fifteen years of age, when he adopted the trade of currier, at which he worked until he obtained his majority. Mr. Bigley was engaged in carpenter and contract work for some time, and was interested in some large building enterprises about the year 1845. In 1853 he worked in the Toledo & Ohio construction department and was later connected with the Illinois Railroad at La Salle. He came to Iowa in 1854, and entered a tract of 800 acres of land in Section 21 of this county, in company with David Reid. The farm that he owned at his death comprises about 395 acres of improved land, nearly all of which is under cultivation.
The deceased was united in marriage in 1859, this county, to Mrs. Elenore Benjamin, who survives her husband. The only son of Mr. and Mrs. Bigley is H. A. L. Bigley who resides with his family on the old homestead in Wayne Township. The deceased was a strong and urgent supporter of the public schools. He was every ready to assist with their advancement, and always gave them substantial aid. He lent support and influence to the cause of democracy until 1854. When the Republican Party was formed he cast off all party ties and became an adherent of republicanism he has ever since affiliated himself with its principals and doctrines. Although a strong man in the party he was not any office seeker, and never held any public trust other than that of School director, which he has held for twelve years, and township trustee.
Mr. Bigley was a painstaking and industrious farmer, always bent on improving his property, but was never at a loss to find time to encourage and help carry out any measure which was to the best interests of the community.
He passed away on the old home farm that had his watchful care for forty years, surrounded by luxury and an abundance of the necessities of life, which were a result of an honest and industrious life. The funeral services will be held at the homestead tomorrow at 1:30 o'clock, P.M. and will be in charge of the Masonic Lodge of this city of which he was a member.

Submitted by: Steve Hanken
Source: Monticello Express, Monticello, Iowa, August 5, 1897


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