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Samuel J. Topley

Genealogical and Personal History of Western Pennsylvania
ed. John W. Jordan, LL.D., Lewis Historical Publishing Co., New York, 1915, Vol. II, pp. 688-689


TOPLEY Ireland has long been the home of the ancestors of Samuel J. Topley, of this chronicle, the family having been planted in the United States by his father, James Topley. James Topley was a son of James and Ann Topley. natives of Ireland. Where they passed their lives. James (1) Topley dying when his son James was an infant.

(II) James (2) Topley. son of James (1) and Ann Topley, was born in Ireland, and was there educated, afterward becoming proficient at the trade of weaver. In 1866 he came to the United States, settling in North Versailles township, Allegheny county. Pennsylvania, where he engaged in coal mining. This calling he later abandoned in favor of farming, and was so engaged until his death. He married Mary, daughter of John and Nancy Blakely, her parents natives of Ireland, where her father was killed in a boiler explosion, her mother emigrating to the United States in 1866. Children of James and Mary (Blakely) Topley: Ann, Susan, Mary, Margaret, James, Agnes, Rachel, Samuel J., of whom further, Nellie, William.

(III) Samuel J. Topley, son of James (2) and Mary (Blakely) Topley, was born in North Versailles township, Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, October 30, 1875. As a youth he attended the local schools, and after finishing his studies learned the trade of brass finisher, at which he was occupied for seventeen years. In 1907 Mr. Topley withdrew from this business and entered real estate dealing in East McKeesport, where he continues in that line at this time. Although his business interests are in East McKeesport, he retains his residence in North Versailles township. For the past ten years Mr. Topley has been a justice of the peace, an office from which he retired in May, 1914. For eleven years he discharged the duties of township clerk, and in November, 1913, was elected township treasurer, which position he now fills. He is a member of the Masonic Order, belonging to Tyrian Lodge, No. 612, Aliquippa Lodge, Knights of Pythias, the Knights of the Mystic Chain, the Royal Arcanum, and the Junior Order of United American Mechanics. He is prominent in public life, and as the incumbent of the offices previously mentioned has served faithfully and well, receiving from his fellows naught but commendation. His business is in a most flourishing condition, and in the seven years that he has dealt in real estate he has acquired a patronage that has been constantly on the increase, his reputation growing through the successful deals that he has directed.

Mr. Topley married, May 11, 1896, Zelma Sarver, of North Versailles township, Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, and has children: Chalmers R., Homer L., John G., Blanche L.

Also, from the McKeesport Daily News, McKeesport, Pennsylvania, May 12, 1895:

Wedding Bells

John Topley and Miss Sarver, of East McKeesport, who eloped to Cumberland, Md., Sunday and were married, arrived home last evening. They received the parental blessing and were tendered a rousing reception at the home of his parents.

(Note the discrepancy in the marriage dates - wonder if SJ gave the interviewer the wrong date for the biography? Betcha Zelma wasn't happy!)

Updated on Saturday, 01-Jul-2000 18:10:39 MDT