JAMES HENRY GALLAGHER, the present recorder of deeds, for Westmoreland county, was born November 23, 1867, at New Alexandria, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania. He is the son of General Thomas F. Gallagher and Elizabeth Kier McBride Gallagher, his wife. She was daughter of Henry and Elizabeth McBride, of Loyalhanna township, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania.
To better acquaint the reader with the progenitors of Mr. Gallagher it may be said that the first to come to America, was Thomas Gallagher (1), born in Donegal county, Ireland, July 28, 1750. He died February 21, 1844, near Pleasant Unity, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, aged ninety-four years. He was buried in the Unity Presbyterian graveyard. He married Isabelle McIlhaney, daughter of James McIlhaney, of Ireland. She died January 14, 1817, and was buried in the same church yard in which her husband was buried. They came from Ireland in 1810, landing in Baltimore, May 10, of that year and visiting the Pattersons and other relatives of that section, they came over the mountains in "Mountain Wagons" to Greensburg, first settling in Washington township, but later in Unity. In Ireland, Mr. Gallagher was an under-landlord and the proprietor of an inn. He was captain of volunteers under the king in his native country. The children of this American ancestor----Thomas Gallagher and wife, were : James, Thomas, died unmarried at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and was buried in the Episcopal cemetery of that city, where a suitable monument marks his resting place. Major George, John Mary Ann and Isabella, who died on board ship, aged ten years.
II. James Gallagher, son of Thomas (1) was born in Ireland, October 14, 1789, died March 3, 1881. He married, February 6, 1821, Elizabeth Foster, the daughter of Thomas and Catharine Foster, nee Harrold. She was born December 14, 1802, and died March 29, 1891. Their children were : 1. Major General Thomas Foster Gallagher, born January 17, 1822, died November 3, 1883 ; 2. Major George, deceased ; 3. William F., deceased ; 4. Isabella, deceased ; 5. Sarah Ann, deceased ; 6. Mary Jane, wife of Dr. Joseph L. Cook, of Westmoreland county ; 7. Martha, deceased ; 8. Elizabeth F. ; 9. James S. ; 10. Robert Taylor, deceased.
III. Major-General Thomas F. Gallagher, oldest son of James Gallagher (II) was a lifelong merchant at New Alexandria, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania. He had a remarkable career in military and business life. Prior to the rebellion he was a prominent figure in the Pennsylvania militia movements, and advanced from the office of lieutenant to major-general, having been captain-brigadier and major-general, and after the rebellion became major-general of that body of state troops. His record as an officer during the great civil conflict from 1861 to 1865, was one of a marked success. He enlisted July 2, 1861, and was made a colonel of the Eleventh Pennsylvania "Reserves" (fortieth in Line). During his service he attained to the rank of brigadier-general. He was commissioned as a leader against the famous "Morgan Raiders," participating in their capture. (An extended account of his army record will appear in the Civil war chapters, volume I of this work.) The children of General Gallagher and wife were : Elizabeth, deceased ; Anna Maria, deceased ; Sarah Agnes, deceased ; Margaret McBride, wife of Jeffery W. Taylor, Esq., of Greensburg ; Isabella, wife of Dr. James R. Jack, of New Alexandria ; and James H. Gallagher.
IV. James H. Gallagher was educated in the public schools of his native town and graduated from Duff's Business College of Pittsburgh, in 1887. Afterwards he was engaged in the real estate business in Greensburg, and was deputy clerk of the Orphans' court and deputy register and recorder of Westmoreland county. Mr. Gallagher was elected in the autumn of 1902, and in January, 1903, sworn into office, as recorder of deeds. His nomination was accorded him without opposition, and he was elected by three thousand, three hundred and forty majority. He was renominated in April, 1905, by the Republican county committee by acclamation in 1904, and did splendid work during the Roosevelt-Fairbanks presidential campaign, aiding materially in bringing about a majority of nine thousand two hundred and forty-eight for the ticket in his county, double that of any former election. He is a member of the Presbyterian church, a Knight Templar, and also belongs to various social orders.
Source: Pages 10 & 11 History of Westmoreland County, Volume II, Pennsylvania by John N. Boucher. New York, The Lewis Publishing Company, 1906
Transcribed April 20, 1999 by Marilynn Wienke for the Westmoreland County History Project
Contributed for use by the Westmoreland County Genealogy Project (http://www.pa-roots.com/westmoreland/)
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