John Bucher
Eleanora Heinlein
Aaron Bugher
Lovina McLain
James Bugher


Family Links

1. Margaret Houseman

2. Mary L. Langdon

James Bugher 2

  • Born: 1 Mar 1821, Fayette City, Fayette, PA 1
  • Marriage (1): Margaret Houseman on 7 Feb 1843 1
  • Marriage (2): Mary L. Langdon in 1864 in Cincinnati, Hamilton, OH 1

  Noted events in his life were:

1. Book: Cincinnati: Past and Present, 1872. 1
James Bugher

Prominent among those who have developed this hazardous business is the gentleman named at the head of this sketch. He has been constantly connected with steam boating from early manhood until the present time.

James Bugher is the son of Aaron Bugher, of Cookstown (now Fayette City) Pa. who at an early day was an extensive builder and proprietor of steamboats on the Monongahela River. In the fall of 1837, he sent his first large boat down the Ohio. And it may be interesting to our readers, as marking the progress made in steam boating since that time, to mention here that the "Express," the boat here alluded to, carried one hundred and eight tons; and was a "big boat" generally with state-rooms around the cabin sufficient for the accommodation of about eight passengers.

Our readers must know that before the introduction of telegraphy everything was "express"; and not being satisfied that the name of the boat was expressive enough of the fleetness of the craft, flying horses were placed around the smokestack.

Well, the "Express" under the command of Capt. Campbell of Brownsville, Pa., with young Bugher as second clerk, left Pittsburgh for St. Louis in Dec. 1837; having reached the latter city on time, and returned as far as Paducah, she with thirty other boats were frozen in for five weeks, during which they enjoyed what was called a "gay time," which included a "grand ball." After the break up at that point they proceeded as far as Peyton's Island below Wheeling, where they were again locked in for a like term; her first trip occupying nearly three months instead of two weeks.

After retaining his clerkship about two years our subject took command of the "Express" for a short time. The following season he took the less conspicuous position of clerk, at first on the "Export" and afterward on the "Mayflower," and subsequently became clerk and then captain of the "Wing and Wing," a large boat in which the engine and machinery of the "Express" had been used. She was about four hundred tons burthen, and was run in the Pittsburgh, St. Louis, and New Orleans trade.

Captain Bugher remained on this boat some two or three years and then built the "tom Corwin," that was subsequently sunk in Plumb Point Bend on the Lower Mississippi. He then built the "Jewess" at Brownsville, Pa. and commanded her about three years, and sold his interest.

He next purchased the "Cinninnatus" and ran her for some time in the Cincinnati and New Orleans trade and then exchanged her for an interest in the Memphis Packet Line; and took command of the "Chicasaw," which two years subsequently collided with another boat in sunk in French Island chute, near Evansville, Ind.

He soon after purchased the boat "John Sweasy" to run in the same line while he built the "Charleston" in Cincinnati. He commanded the "Charleston" about two years when she took fire and burned to the water's edge near Golconda, Ill. With one thousand bales of cotton on board.

The "Glendale" was then purchased for the same line; and after commanding this boat for several years Captain Bugher, in company with his two brothers, bought the interest of the other owners of the line, the Captain remaining ashore and superintending it. They continued the sole proprietors until the close of the war, when the sold out and abandoned active life on the river.

Soon after this he was elected president of an insurance company, and acted in that capacity for several years. He was one of the incorporators of the Third National Bank, and has been one of its directors till the present time. He is a director of the Cincinnati Gas and Coke Co. and a director of the Cincinnati and Covington Bridge Co.

Mr. Bugher was married to Miss Martha Houseman of Cookstown, Pa. in 1842; by whom he has one son, Horace. Mrs. Bugher died in 1860. He was married again, in 1864 to Mary L. Langdon of this city.

After partially retiring from business in 1865, Mr. Bugher visited Europe with his wife. Leaving New York in Dec. they crossed the Atlantic, went to Egypt, where they met with other Americans, conjointly with whom they chartered a small steamboat and proceeded up the Nile to the first cataract; the trip occupying about three weeks.

From Alexandria, they proceeded to Jaffa and thence to Jerusalem; returning to Jaffa, they sailed to Constantinople, stopping at all the places of interest. From thence they proceeded to Naples and Rome and before leaving for home passed through nearly all the German States. This journey occupied nearly nine months, and while the Captain thinks it was the hardest work he ever did, there was so much of interest to occupy the mind and so much that was really enjoyable in the frolics and fancies of their own party, that he remembers it as one of the brightest spots of his lifetime.

Born March 1, 1821, he is fifty-one years of age, with a robust constitution and a sound mind. His general good judgment and steady application to business have secured an abundance of this world's goods, and he has wisely concluded to enjoy it while he is able to do so.

He is living in a handsome villa residence in the beautiful village of Clifton, where he removed shortly after his second marriage.

He was elected to the council and served in that capacity until 1871, when he was elected Mayor. He enjoys the confidence of his fellow citizens, which a life of straightforward, old-fashioned integrity of purpose and character have won for him, and may well be envied by those who are less happily organized.

We can only express the hope that he may, like the staunchest of the boats he commanded upon the beautiful river, grandly glide down the stream of time freighted to the guards with good deeds and followed by the benedictions of those he has made Happy.

James married Margaret Houseman on 7 Feb 1843.1 (Margaret Houseman died in 1860 1.)

James next married Mary L. Langdon in 1864 in Cincinnati, Hamilton, OH.1 (Mary L. Langdon was born in Cincinnati, Hamilton, OH 1.)


1 <i>Cincinnati: Past and Present: or as Exhibited in the Life - Labor of its Leading Men</i> (Joblin, M. & Co., Cincinnati, 1872).

2 Gresham, John M. and Wiley, Samuel T, <i>Biographical & Portrait Cyclopedia of Fayette County, Pennsylvania</i> (John M. Gresham & Co. Chicago: 1889), Page 318.

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