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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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HIRAM H. HIGHLANDS. One of the familiar names of Southampton township, Cumberland county, is that of Highlands, those bearing it being of a good substantial class of citizens, of which any community might well be proud. In the present generation Hiram H. Highlands, farmer and formerly a railroad contractor, is worthily bearing the name. He was born in Southampton township Nov. 12, 1849, son of William and Maria (Clever) Highlands, and grandson of James Highlands.

James Highlands was a native of Ireland of Scotch-Irish parentage. He married a Miss Peoples, also of Scotch-Irish parentage. They came to America and located in Pennsylvania, where they reared a large family.

William Highlands was a native of Cumberland county, born in 1818. After his marriage he located on the John Hunter farm on the Bottom road, in the vicinity of Leesburg — a farm containing 115 acres of rich, fertile land. There he made his home until his death in July, 1867. He was an ardent supporter of Democratic principles. Socially, he belonged to the I. O. O. F. His wife, Maria Clever, was born in Southampton in 1830, daughter of George and Elizabeth (Hippensteel ) Clever, and she now makes her home in her native town. The Hippensteels were of German origin, and were among the earliest settlers in Southampton township. To William and Maria (Clever) Highlands were born children as follows: Hiram H.; Amelia J., wife of Jacob Mower, of Indiana; Miss Elizabeth, living with her mother in Shippensburg; Margaret, wife of William Baker, of Hopewell township; Sallie, who married Weir Hale, and lives in Franklin county; Annie M., who married John Cochenhaur; Abbie, married to Charles B. Baker; and Hulda, who married William Farley, of Franklin county.

Hiram H. Highlands was permitted to attend the village school in Leesburg until his sixteenth year, when he began to assume a large portion of the work on the home farm. He remained at home until he attained his majority, at which time he located in Leesburg and began to farm and handle grain on his own account, so continuing from 1883 to 1895. During this time he began interested in railroad contracting, in grading and construction work, on the Reading & Pennsylvania system, and also on the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburg in the construction work. He met with considerable success in this line, and branching out accepted contracts that took him into the neighboring States of Virginia and New Jersey. He employed at times quite a large force of men. When his father died, he bought out the interests of the other heirs in the home place, which contains sixty-four acres, and this has been his home since his marriage. It is improved with good buildings, and the house has been altered to suit the times, making it a most comfortable dwelling.

In 1873 Mr. Highlands was married to Miss Cora Foreman, of Southampton township, daughter of Jacob W. and Anna (Bughman) Foreman. She was born in 1851, and died in March, 1900, the mother of eleven children, eight of whom lived to mature years: George W., a railroad contractor; Milton A., assistant in the mechanical department, of the Pennsylvania Rubber Company, at Jeannette, Pa.; Joseph R. E., a railroad contractor in construction work in Virginia; Jacob F., assisting his father; Blanche, at home; and Cora May, Maria and Catherine, also at home. In politics Mr. Highlands votes the Republican ticket, and while he takes an intelligent interest in public affairs, he has never taken an active part in party work, and cares nothing for the honors of official position. His religious connection is with the Evangelical Church.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company. 

View additional Cumberland County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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