James Christopher MacGregor

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JAMES CHRISTOPHER MacGREGOR, of Kittanning, has conducted his various business interests from that point for a number of years. Previously he was in the mercantile business at Eddyville, and he still owns a fine farm in that vicinity, located on the line of the recently constructed Shawmut railroad. Besides, he has oil interests in Venango county, Pa., and lumber and sawmill investments elsewhere in Armstrong county, all of which he has managed successfully. He is a native of Armstrong county, born at Pine Creek Furnace, in Boggs township.

As may be judged by the name, the MacGregors are of Scotch origin, and Christopher MacGregor, grandfather of James Christopher, was born in Scotland, whence he came to America when a young man. His occupation was farming, and his home was in Valley township; in his latter days he lived with his son John B. For many years he was engaged on public works. He was a Republican in politics. He married Madeline Barr, a native of Germany, whose father and brothers were engaged in iron manufacturing in the South, and all her brothers left large estates, but no families. Mr. and Mrs. MacGregor settled in Armstrong county soon after their marriage. They were members of the German Reformed Church, and were held in high estimation by their neighbors. They had six sons: James, a farmer; Jacob, who became proprietor of the "MacGregor House" at Parker; John B., who farmed in Valley township; Henry, who died in childhood; William, father of James Christopher MacGregor; and Samuel, formerly a farmer in Valley township, now living at Apollo, Armstrong county.

William MacGregor, father of James C. MacGregor, is now living retired on his farm at Bryan, Armstrong county. Early in the Civil war he enlisted for the Union service, joining Company K, 155th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, and remained in the army for over three years, until the close of the conflict. He learned and followed the trade of machinist. Mr. MacGregor is now in his seventy-fourth year, and his wife, whose maiden name was Hannah Gallagher, is seventy-one. They are active and in good health. They are members of St. Michael's Episcopal Church. Of the seven children born to them, three sons and four daughters, James Christopher is mentioned below; Rebecca taught school for nine terms, married John C. Carson, and died some eight years ago, leaving a daughter, LaRue Carson, who lives with her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. William MacGregor; Bertha married James Postlewait, a merchant, and they reside at Bryan with their two children, Herbert and Gladys; Herbert O., who formerly had a blacksmith and carpenter shop at Dayton, now engaged in construction work on the railroad, married Edna Miller, and they have two children, Wilfred and Florence; Belle married William O'Harrow, a former principal of the school at Rural Valley, now a merchant at that place, and they have three sons, Lewis, William and James; W. Charles taught school four terms, until appointed clerk to the county commissioners, the position he now occupies (he is a member of the Elks lodge at Kittanning); Frances married Neale Moore, a merchant at Bryan, and they have two sons, Charles and Raymond.

James Christopher MacGregor moved with his parents to McWilliams, Red Bank township, where his father engaged in the mercantile business. There the boy attended school and clerked in his father's store. When he was about seventeen his father sold the store and purchased the farm at Bryan, in Cowanshannock township, where he still resides, conducting a machine and wagon shop there besides looking after the cultivation of his property, and James helped with the farm work, as well as in the shop. He also clerked in the store of his uncle, W. M. Gallagher, at Bryan. Subsequently he went to Pittsburgh, where he worked in a grocery store for five years, at the end of that time returning to Armstrong county and locating at Eddyville, as clerk for the late Isaac D. Doverspike. After three years in his employ he married Mr. Doverspike's daughter, and he then abandoned the plan he had in mind, to buy a store on Butler street, Pittsburgh, his father-in-law, who had decided to remove to Kittanning, persuading him to purchase his interest in the Eddyville establishment. A few years later he also purchased Mr. Doverspike's farm and homestead near that place, the farm property comprising 118 acres, to which Mr. MacGregor has since added ten acres adjoining, and he also owns thirty-five acres of timberland adjoining this 128-acre tract. Mr. MacGregor carried on the store at Eddyville for eight years, until it was burned, his loss by the fire amounting to $1,500. Following this disaster he gave his attention to the cultivation of his farm for two years, during which time he resided at Eddyville. Then, at the solicitation of Mr. Doverspike, he removed to Kittanning, and purchasing a large grocery store in the borough, was engaged in the business for a year, selling his interest at the end of that time. This was the grocery now run by MacGregor Brothers, and he was a member of that firm. Since disposing of his store Mr. MacGregor has devoted all his attention to his oil, lumber and sawmill interests, having two mills, one at Mosgrove, on the Pennsylvania railroad, the other at Nichola, on the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh road. All of his business affairs are on a substantial basis and prospering. He is a citizen of recognized worth, and well known in the Masonic fraternity, belonging to the Blue lodge (No. 522) at New Bethlehem; to Kittanning Chapter, No. 247, R. A. M.; Pittsburgh Commandery, No.1, K. T. (the largest commandery in the world); Coudersport Consistory; and the Shrine at Pittsburgh. His political support goes to the Republican party.

On May 8, 1901, Mr. MacGregor married Edna Leonore Doverspike, daughter of Isaac D. and Anna Clara (Fleming) Doverspike, who are fully mentioned in this work. Mr. and Mrs. MacGregor have one child, born in 1903, named for her grandparents Anna Gladine Doverspike; when ten years old she became a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Kittanning, of which her parents are members, her mother being a member of the choir for several years.

Source: Pages 448, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed September 2001 by Mickey Cendrowski for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (http://www.pa-roots.com/armstrong/)

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