BRIGGS, Mrs. Mary Blatchley, born in Valparaiso, Ind., 1st January, 1846. She is of Scotch, English and Dutch descent.
The father was a practicing physician and surgeon of prominence in the allopathic school. Mrs. Briggs' early school-days
were spent in the public schools of Iowa. Later her education was continued in the young ladies' seminary in Council Bluffs,
Iowa, receiving prizes for excellent scholarship. In the month of August, 1861, her family removed to Quincy, lll., where
she resumed her studies and there enjoyed the advantages of the best schools until she was nineteen years old. In religious
belief Mrs. Briggs is strictly a Presbyterian, was born "in the faith,'' and has always lived the practical life of a consistent
Christian. Rev. F. S. Blayney, LL.D., the first pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church of Omaha, writes of Mrs. Briggs's
practical and valuable aid during the long and severe trials from 1880 to 1886 in the struggle to found and build his church,
she being one of the foremost workers for the society's welfare. She has always taken a vivid interest in public characters
and the local and foreign politics discussed in the newspapers. She was married to John S. Briggs, 24th December 1867, since
which time they have resided in Omaha, Neb. Mr. Briggs was born in Ohio, but was reared in Iowa, removing to Nebraska in 1856.
He is the son of the late Ansel Briggs, first governor of the State of Iowa. To Mr. and Mrs. Briggs three promising children
have been born. Mrs. Briggs has filled many important public positions. During eleven years she served as assistant secretary,
superintendent, reporter for the press, and manager of county, state and inter-state fairs. While on a visit to Idaho, she and
her husband prepared a collection of minerals, stalactitic and calcareous deposits, which, at the suggestion of the officials
of the Union Pacific Railroad, was sent to the Mechanics' Institute in Boston, Mass. Mrs. Briggs is interested in art and is
secretary of the Western Art Association, which has three-hundred members. In literature she has won an assured position by
her poems, one volume of which has been compiled and published. Mrs. Briggs was selected by Mrs. Potter Palmer as one of the
six representative women of the West to serve on the executive committee of the Board of Lady Managers of the World's Columbian
Commission for the Exposition in 1893. She was appointed a member of the bylaws judiciary committee and was elected an honorary
and corresponding member of the woman's branch of the World's Congress Auxiliary, and served on several committees. She possesses
an intimate knowledge of Nebraska, its history, its resources, its development and its people.
[American women: fifteen hundred biographies with over 1,400 portraits: a comprehensive encyclopedia of the lives and achievements
of American women during the nineteenth century, Volume 1 by Mast, Crowell & Kirkpatrick, 1897 – Transcribed by Therman Kellar]