Alexander County

Biography - James H. Galligan

JAMES H. GALLIGAN. Distinguished not only as a native son of Cairo, his birth having occurred in this city November 11, 1866, but as one of its most successful and popular business men, James H. Galligan is widely and favorably known as cashier of the Alexander County National Bank and of the Alexander County Savings Bank.

His father, Daniel J. Galligan, was born in county Cavan, Ireland, in 1839. In 1841 his parents immigrated to the United States, locating in Trenton, New Jersey, where he grew to man's estate, acquiring his education in the public schools, and there learning the carpenter's trade. Soon after the close of the Civil war he started westward, following the advice of Horace Greeley, locating eventually at Cairo, Illinois, where for a while he was in the service of the Federal Government while it was winding up its internal naval affairs, being employed in the Mound City Navy Yard and at other points along the big rivers where there were naval stations. Completing his work for the Government, he resumed carpentering, and as a contractor and builder was afterwards kept busy, as he added one building after another to the growing and expanding little city at the mouth of the Ohio, continuing his residence in Cairo until his death, June 10, 1887. In his political faith he was a Democrat, and at one time was superintendent of streets. His wife, whose maiden name was Anna Callahan. is still a resident of Cairo. They became the parents of seven children, six of whom survive, James H. being the oldest child.

Acquiring a practical education when young, James H. Galligan dropped his school work in his junior year at the Cairo High School to become a clerk in a drug store. The position proving uncongenial in . every respect, he sought other work, and in January, 1885, was made messenger boy in the Alexander County National Bank. Faithful in the performance of every duty laid upon him, he rose step by step through the various grades of subordinate work, from 1890 until 1896 serving as assistant cashier of that institution. In the latter year Mr. Galligan was promoted to the cashiership of the Alexander County National Bank and of the Alexander County Savings Bank, succeeding T. J. Kerth, and has since filled these positions with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of all concerned.

His tenure of service, with its attendant success, with the bank has commended Mr. Galligan to the investing and commercial field about Cairo, and has caused his selection as a managing force in other of the city's enterprises. He is now president of the Cairo Commercial Club, which is active in "boosting" the material interests of the city; is treasurer of the Cairo Building and Loan Association; and has served many terms as a member of the Board of Education.

An influential member of the Illinois Bankers Association, Mr. Galligan is a frequent attendant at its sessions, and has been honored with an appointment as a member of the Deep Waterway Conventions, which usually meet in Chicago, where an impetus is ever given to the subject of "Inland Waterways for Domestic Commerce," receiving an attention that augurs much for its final achievement on a national scale. Fraternally Mr. Galligan is a charter member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and treasurer of his lodge; of the Catholic Knights of America; and of the Ancient Order of Hibernians.

Mr. Galligan married, in Cairo, Edith Kluge, a daughter of William Kluge, a prominent German citizen, and they have one child, Helen Galligan.

Extracted 15 Jan 2018 by Norma Hass from 1912 History of Southern Illinois, Volume 2, pages 890-891.


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