From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Magowan, James E.

(born: 1870  -  died: 1933) The following information comes from the James E. Magowan archival file at the Montgomery County Historical Society and Museum in Mt. Sterling, KY.

James E. Magowan was a successful businessman and a community leader. He was born in Montgomery County, KY, the son of Amanda and John Wesley Magowan, and he was a brother to John, Noah, Susan, and Emily Magowan. The family lived in Smithville, KY. James Magowan, his brothers, and sister, Susan, all attended the Academy at Berea. As an adult, James Magowan was a real estate agent, loans and collecting agent, notary public, carpenter, contractor, and owner of the Magowan Theater and the colored skating rink in Mt. Sterling. James Magowan developed the Lincoln View Cemetery next to Olive Hill Cemetery in Smithville.

The Lincoln View Cemetery opened on April 1, 1929, with James Magowan as president, his son, Jesse E., 1st vice president, and his wife, Lizzie, his daughter, Sarah, and his son-in-law and daughter, Watson D. Banks and Estella Magowan Banks, were board members. James Magowan established a subdivision for African Americans next to the cemetery, and he owned and managed the waterline to the homes, charging a monthly fee for the service. He established the Mt. Sterling Colored Fair Association in 1909. He was owner of the James E. Magowan Grocery Store, which was located within the J. E. Magowan Hall (built in 1914) at the corner of East Locust and Fox Streets. James Magowan leased-out the grocery store and other space within the building.

Additional information about James E. Magowan comes from "Achievements of the late James E. Magowan" on pp. 23-24 in Montgomery County Kentucky Bicentennial, 1774-1974, by S. A. Harris. James E. Magowan was also a school teacher for six years, and he led the effort to extend the gas line into Smithville.  In 1915 he was president of the organization that had a sidewalk completed from the city limits of Mt. Sterling to the entrance of Olive Hill Cemetery. James Avenue in Mt. Sterling was named in his honor. James E. Magowan is buried in the Lincoln View Cemetery in Mt. Sterling, KY.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Montgomery County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Madison County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Mt. Sterling, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Smithville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Berea, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

References

Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Magowan, John Wesley [Brooks]
NKAA Entry: Montgomery County Colored Fair Association (Kentucky)
NKAA Source: James E. Magowan archival file
NKAA Source: Montgomery County, Kentucky bicentennial, 1774-1974

Related Entries Citing this Entry

NKAA Entry:  Magowan Brothers and the Reporter (Mt. Sterling, KY)
NKAA Entry:  Magowan, John Wesley [Brooks]

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Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Magowan, James E.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed December 11, 2018, http://nkaa.uky.edu/nkaa/items/show/2662.

Last modified: 2017-11-21 01:53:21