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Jay County Indiana Biographies


FRANCIS VINCENT GIGANDET, a prominent and enterprising citizen of Wayne Township, was born in France, June 14, 1830, a son of Nicholas and Mary (Papon) Gigandet, natives of France. His parents came to America a few  years after their marriage, when he was about one year and a half old, and first settled in Stark County, Ohio. They  subsequently removed to Wheeling, West Virginia, and later to Cincinnati, Ohio, remaining there three years.  They  settled in Darke County about the year 1836 or 1837, where the father died in October, 1847. He was a saddler by  trade, and followed that avocation for several years after coming to America. F.V., the subject of this sketch, was  reared a farmer, and received his education in the common schools of his neighborhood and by study at home. He was united in marriage, June 13, 1854, to Miss Mary Humbert, a native of France, and a daughter of Nicholas and  Mary (Dodier) Humbert. Nine children have been born to this union, as follows -William Eugene, Martha Isabelle,  Hubert Amos, Emanuel Isidore (born in 1863, and died in October, 1885), Walter Augustus, Aurelia Celina, Maria  Flora, Francis Vincent and Lovina Ann. Mr. Gigandet continued to reside in Darke County until 1873, when he came with his family to Jay County, Indiana. He bought his farm in Jay County from Henry Ewing, almost unimproved. A few acres has been cleared and twenty acres deadened, and two log cabins and a log stable had been erected. He has made good improvements during his residence on the place, making it one of the best farms in his neighborhood. His farm contains eighty acres, of which fifty-two acres is cleared and under fine cultivation. He has a fine, substantial residence, built in modern style, and considered one of the best in Wayne Township. In connection with his general farming he devotes some attention to stock-raising, his farm being divided into different fields for that object. In his political views Mr. Gigandet is a Democrat, casting his first presidential vote for Franklin Pierce in 1852, and at all succeeding presidential elections he has voted the Democratic ticket. Although an adherent of the Democratic principles, he believes in a good, honest Government for the people; and in local elections where he is acquainted with the candidates, if his party nominates a candidate who in his judgment has not the qualifications of a good officer, able and willing to discharge his official duties in the interests of the people and the good of the country, he does not hesitate to look in the ranks of the opposing parties for an honest man, and if he finds him he votes without regard to party affiliation. Mr. Gigandet is one of the most active member of the Catholic church. In his religious views he is not bigoted, but rather liberal, and is always ready to hold out the hand of friendship and help to his dissenting neighbors and friends, having no ill-feeling toward them because they do not believe as he does. Nor has he any ill-will toward any man on account of his religious or political views, believing that all, let them be Jew or Gentile, Protestant or infidel, have rights which ought to be respected by all good  citizens, and that if a man is honest and upright he should be welcomed in any neighborhood without questioning his creed or political views. He believes that all have a right to worship according to the dictates of their own conscience. Mr. Gigandet took an active part in the building of his church, of which he was one of the first trustees, and is one of its most liberal supporters. William E. Gigandet, the eldest son of F.V. Gigandet, was born in Darke County, Ohio, August 7,1855, where he was reared, coming to Jay County with his father in 1873. He was married April 30, 1880, to Miss Edna Ann Miller, a daughter of A. Miller, of Wayne Township, Jay County.  They are the parents of two children, named Agatha A. and Estella E.

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