John Fingar Runs Off with James Sigler's Wife

John Henry Fingar, born 1845 was the son of Michael Finger and Hannah Clum. About 1874 he married Sarah Bottomly, who was born abt 1835, and they had 2 children. Starting sometime around 1882, John was having an affair with Julia Bathrick, who, at the time, was married to [Milton] James Sigler. They made a couple of attempts to elope, but finally on the third try in 1890 they succeeded. John's wife Sarah was granted a divorce and later married Egbert Burger. John and Julia had one child, Frederick Finger. The newspaper accounts are shown below.

The authorities of Tivoli, Dutchess county, offer a reward for the arrest of Mrs. James Sagender and John Fingar. She left home saying she intended to spend Thanksgiving with friends at Tivoli. She, however, went to Hudson, drew $500 from the bank and joined her paramour, Fingar, who is a married man, and leaves a wife and two children in destitute circumstances.

Utica Morning Herald December 4, 1882


JACKSON CORNER, Dec. 5. EDITOR REGISTER. - We have had a sensation, and fearing your lady correspondent, "Mamie," would not give you the particulars, I take the liberty of attending to this matter myself. On Tuesday of last week the inhabitants of this quiet little hamlet were horrified by the startling announcement that there had been an elopement and that the parties thereto were both married. The facts of the case, as ascertained are as follows: On Monday [November 27, 1882] of last week Mrs. Julia Sigler, wife of James Sigler, started for Mandalin, as she stated, to visit friends at that place. The next morning she left Mandalin and went to Hudson, telling her friends that she had some business to transact in that city, and would return by the evening train. She did not come back, however, and the Madalin people telegraphed to her husband at this place. The next morning Mr. John Finger, one of our well known and respected farmers, took his team and hired man and drove to Barrytown. Leaving the man at Barrytown, with instructions about the farm work, and telling him how to dispose of a certain quantity of rye, he took the cars on the Hudson River Railroad, and Mr. W. W. Hinsdale saw him on the train on the way to Hudson, where it is supposed he met Mrs. Sigler. It has since been learned that Mrs. S. drew $500, which she had in the Hudson Savings Bank, and Finger also drew what money he had in the Red Hook Bank. Mr. Finger leaves an estimable wife and two daughters, the latter aged about ten and twelve years respectively. Mrs. Sigler leaves a husband and one child. The farm Finger occupied was mostly bought with his wife's money, and was heavily mortgaged. It is feared that he has also mortgaged his personal property, so that Mrs. F. will have little of anything left. Mrs. Sigler is a daughter of Jeremiah Bathrick, and for some time past her name and Finger's have been frequently mentioned in connection with unseemly conduct. A reward has been offered for the arrest of the guilty couple. Mrs. Sigler's father had considerable trouble last spring about dogs, and two or three of his sheep were bitten. This affair is probably more serious to him than the biting of the sheep. On Monday Deputy Sheriff Shields attached the property of Finger in the interest of creditors.

Dec. 6. - The elopers were captured in New Brunswick, N. J., and yesterday came home to Jackson Corner, where they now are.

The Register December 8, 1882


The people in this vicinity were greatly shocked a few days since by the announcement that John Fingar had eloped with James Sigler's wife. Mrs. Fingar was formerly a resident of this place. Her parents moved here when she was a child, and resided here a number of years. The family were well and favorably known in this neighborhood. Mrs. Fingar was highly esteemed by all who knew her, and has the sympathy of her many friends here.

The Register December 8, 1882


The authorities of Tivoli, Dutchess county, offer a reward for the arrest of Mrs. James Sagender and John Fingar, who have eloped leaving each a family behind.

Geneva Gazette December 8, 1882


The case of John Pells against Sarah W. Finger and George Sitzer was before Judge Barnard on Saturday.

It involved a foreclosure on a farm that Sitzer bought of Mrs. Finger.

Pells, the owner of the mortgage, testified that the mortgage was past due and the interest was paid up to April 1, 1889. An agreement was made for an extension of the time of payment on the principal, under certain conditions. In case Sitzer took the deed of the place he was to secure the plaintiff in the payment of $75 of the principal and the interest added, by the first of September. Sitzer, according to the witness, did not fulfill his part of this agreement. The back interest was subsequently paid, so that no interest is due back of last April.

Mr. Sitzer testified that he bought the farm with the distinct understanding that Mr. Pells was to let the mortgage remain. Mr. Pells agreed to let the mortgage lie this year in case the witness bought the farm. Seventy five dollars were to be paid in September but no security was to be given. The interest was to be paid in March.

On crossexaminatlon it was brought out that Sitzer had never taken a deed of the farm; that he had not paid Finger $225, as agreed, and witness claimed that this part of the contract was not fulfilled because Pells will not release the Fingers from their obligations to him.

Other witnesses were sworn to corroborate Mr. Sitzer's version of the contract and agreement.

Mr. Finger testified that Sitzer demanded the deed of the farm, but Finger would not give up the deed unless Pells would relieve him of the bond. Finger first wanted to lease the farm but Pells would not allow it, and so the offer to sell the farm was made.

Decision reserved.

The Poughkeepsie Daily Eagle July 29, 1889


John Finger and Julia Sigler made their third attempt to elope on Tuesday of last week, and it seems they have made a success of it this time, as they have not, so far as is known to your correspondent, been heard from since they left Albany. They were seen to get off the train by a young lady who knew them. The community is to be congratulated that they are rid of a great nuisance.

The Register February 21, 1890


John Pells has bought the Fingar farm at Jackson Corners, and commenced work immediately upon it. Price $4,510.

Chas. Bathrick took a day off the road to ??? the Fingar farm. He came within $10 of the price, but did not buy it.

The Register May 23, 1890


Sarah W. Fingar, of Jackson Corners, in this county, brought an action against John H. Fingar, her husband, a resident at the same place, for an absolute divorce on the ground of adultery.

Poughkeepsie Daily Eagle September 29, 1890


Absolute Divorce Granted.

Sarah W. Finger, of Jackson Corners, brought an action against John H. Finger, a resident at the same place, for an absolute divorce on the ground of adultery, before Judge Bernard in Poughkeepsie, last Saturday Witnesses were sworn who testified that the defendant, John H. Finger, was at the present time, and had been for some time prior to the commencment of the action, living with one Julia Ann Siglar, of Jackson Corners; that he had abandoned his wife, the plaintiff, and had failed to contribute to her support for two years. The degree for absolute divorce was granted.

Hudson Daily Evening Register October 3, 1890


John Fingar and Julia Sigler and Mrs. Jeremiah Bathrick went east last Sunday.

The Register November 14, 1890


ACTION FOR DIVORCE. — At a special term of the Supreme court, before Judge Barnard in Poughkeepsie last Saturday, Sarah W. Fingar asked for alimony and counsel fees, pending the trial of her suit for absolute divorce against her husband, John H. Fingar, of Jackson Corners. It is alleged that Fingar deserted his wife in December, 1889, and lived with Julia Ann Sigler at Jackson Corners. Later the couple eloped to Canada, and returned to Jackson Corners in June last. The defendant claimed that he was poor and unable to pay anything. The court ordered him to pay $50 counsel fee and $5 weekly alimony. Judge Guernsey appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Hauver for the defendant.

The Register August 15, 1891


Marriages — At Ancram Lead Mines, March 23, 1892, by Rev. C. C. Miller, Egbert Burger of Gallatin, and Sarah W. Fingar, of Jackson Corners.

Pine Plains Register April 1, 1892


The funeral services of Mrs. Julia Bathrick Siglar Fingar, who died very suddenly at her residence on Saturday morning, were held at the Reformed church on Monday, the 5th last Rev. Mr. Farrier, of Hick's Hill officiated.

Hudson Evening Register December, 1898


Sarah Burger, wife of the late Egbert Burger, died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Daniel Daniels, on the Uriah Hicks place in this town. Her age was 83 years. Funeral services at the Vedder Church at one o'clock Friday afternoon of this week, February 15.

The Pine Plains Register February 14, 1924



Family Lines | News | Persons Index | Privacy Policy
Home