James G. Megeath

James G. Megeath (HM13ID)

Location: Omaha, NE 68111 Douglas County
Country: United States of America

N 41° 16.672', W 95° 57.586'

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Inscription

1824 - 1906

Born in Virginia in 1824, James Megeath was the eldest of 10 children. By age 20, he had become a cattle and sheep trader. Struck by gold fever, he went to Calaveras County, California, in 1851, operating a general merchantise store for three years. Enroute back to Virginia in 1854, he visited Omaha and saw its potential for the future. By 1857, he was operating a general merchandise store in Omaha with his brother, Samuel, and his brother-in-law, W. S. Richards, becoming sole owner by 1867. The right man in the right place at the right time, he capitalized on the nascent Union Pacific Railroad as it was built westward from Omaha. He developed portable warehouses and used them in the general forwarding and commission business, moving them westward as track was laid. His sales to the railroad and to its workers were valued in the millions of dollars.

He also purchased considerable real estate in Omaha. In 1872, he and Andrew Hanscom donated land that became Hanscom Park in what was then southwest Omaha. (As Mr. Hanscom had given 60 percent of the land, the park was named for him instead of Mr. Megeath.) At varous times an Omaha city councilman and Douglas County commissioner, Mr. Megeath also served as speaker of the Nebraska Territorial Legislature in 1856.

While in Virginia, he had married Virginia Carter, with whom he had five children. James Megeath was buried on November 12, 1906, in the family mausoleum, where his wife, children and some of his grandchildren are also buried. Tragically, one granddaughter, Mary Virginia, queen of Ak-Sar-Ben in 1916, died virtually on the eve of her wedding to Herbert Connell. She was buried in the family mausoleum in her coronation robes on May 8, 1919.

Historic marker dedicated on May 27, 1991
Details
HM NumberHM13ID
Tags
Year Placed1991
Placed ByProspect Hill Cemetery
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 4th, 2014 at 4:17am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15T E 252112 N 4573829
Decimal Degrees41.27786667, -95.95976667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 41° 16.672', W 95° 57.586'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds41° 16' 40.32" N, 95° 57' 35.16" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)402
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 525-535 Cemetery Rd, Omaha NE 68111, US
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