John Pigman

What Are You Throwing Away?

John Pigman arrived in what would later become the United States of America sometime prior to 1692. The British colonies in 1690 were “a mere fringe of coastal settlements” (E. James Ferguson, 1974). The population was less than 250,000 settled along the Atlantic coast. I am among the many thousands of descendants of John Pigman now living in the United States. I am the fortunate recipient of the work of four genealogists who compiled information on the Pigman family. The book, John Pigman and His Descendants, leaves much unanswered and some information in question. That is the nature of genealogy. In fact, it is the nature of all historic research. It is always a work in progress while more material is unearthed. Nevertheless, the Pigman history is fascinating. It is a thrill to know that one’s ancestors were among the founders of the country.

Nathaniel Pigman, grandson of John I, son of John II, entered the American Revolution September 12, 1777. He was commissioned a Captain in General John Murdock’s Regiment of the Middle Battalion of the Militia. On Oct. 4, 1777 he led his men in the battle of Germantown. On February 3, 1778 he took the Oath of Fidelity class #1 Officer of the 7th Company, Montgomery Co. Militia. Nathaniel eventually rose to the rank of Lt. Colonel.

While Nathaniel was fighting for freedom it was wife, Nancy, and 12 year old son Joseph Waters Pigman who would tend the farm. Young Joseph was no match for the task at hand. The farm was 191 acres located in part of what is now Washington, D.C. After many years of growing tobacco the land was depleted of nutrients. By the time Nathaniel returned to his farm it was bankrupt.

Almost beyond belief is the fact that this hero of battle and once prosperous farmer now faced debtor’s prison. He did win a lawsuit, with the help of young son Joseph, but did spend time in prison. Nathaniel died in 1801 or 1802. Nancy died in 1810.

As far as I can determine, Pigmans have fought in every war in which the United States has been engaged. Once again, the Pigman family history points to the importance of museums, archives, courthouses and family records to tell us who we are. Are you throwing out something that future generations might find valuable in telling their story?

By Jan Warner, nee Jeanette Pigman
Copyright 2006, Morrison County Historical Society

11 Comments

  1. My dad, Brig. Gen. John H. Pigman, was born on this day 84 years ago. He lost a battle with Leukemia in February of ’78. He was a West Point graduate. I’m very interested in learning and sharing more of the Pigman families’ history with my teenaged children.

  2. Hi, Kris – Sounds like you need to talk to Jan Warner, who wrote the article above. She can tell you where she got a copy of the Pigman history she mentioned, plus fill you in on some of the family history. I’ll email you off the blog with her contact info. Thanks for sharing information on your dad.

    -Mary Warner

  3. As a Delphi Indiana native and canal historian(local), I have studied the life and family of George Washington Pigman, who married Caroline Armstrong, and who moved to Delphi in 1838, constructed a store on the corner of Main and Washington, and reared a fine family. He, his wife, and son William Armstrong Pigman were laid to rest in the IOOF Cemetery north of the city.

  4. Hi, does any of this history involve the Pigmans that were born in Tennessee, and Wilkes, North Carolina. My father’s mother was Una Pigman from New Mexico. Thanks and have a nice day!:)

    • Great question, Marie. We will pass it on to our executive director, Jan (Pigman) Warner. Hopefully she will have an answer.
      Ann Marie

    • RE: Una Pigman, was the 3rd oldest daughter of Martin & Alpha Pigman. She was my aunt, I never met her, but have been doing some geneology, & if you find Martin & Alpha Pigman, you will also find some interesting facts & pictures of her. My father was Joe Pigman, her youngest brother.

  5. Hello Rachelle Pigman here, from Dayton Ohio. My grand father was Oscar Pigman from Knott County. He married Carolyn Chinn and had Ralph, Ronnie, Randy, Robbie, Gary, Marcia, Cathy, and Tammy Pigman. I would love to get a hold of that book to research some more. I have started a Pigman Family Facebook Page too if anyone is interested in joining! We sure are all over the US!

  6. Hi, Rachelle – If I remember correctly, the Pigman book was sent to Jan as a personal gift because she is a descendant of the family. I think only a limited number of copies were printed, so I’m not sure how you can get a copy. Perhaps if you ask family members that are geographically closer, one might turn up that you can borrow.

    Mary Warner
    Museum Manager

  7. Thomas Joseph Carroll

    Would love to come to the museum and view the book! Alonzo was my great, great grandfather!

    • Thomas Joseph Carroll – I think you and I may be of the same generation of Pigman descendants, then. If I am looking at the family history correctly, I, also, would be a great, great, grandson of Alonzo.

      My grandfather, Earl Clinton Pigman, was the son of William, who was the son of Alonzo D. Pigman.

      • Thomas Joseph Carroll

        Yes, we must be the same generation! I am a teacher and live in St Paul. Would be interesting to meet some time! I was adopted when a baby! I did once meet my great grandmother minnie Pigman before he died. Would like to connect with more blood relatives.

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