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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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QUIGLEY, John P. (St. Louis, MO, June 29, 1825--Oct. 19, 1902). Dr. John P. Quigley, son of Patrick QUIGLEY and Catherine QUIGLEY received his education in Dubuque. He studied medicine in Galena for two years and then pursued his medical studies here and in Cleveland, Ohio.

In 1850, Dr. Quigley traveled to California and remained there five years before returning to Dubuque in 1855. Dr. Quigley held the office of City Treasurer and City Alderman for seven years. He served as a member of the Board of Education and was elected City Recorder in 1878. In that year he lost the primary for election to county treasurer. It was believed this was due to his support of an local ordinance impounding stray cattle in the city. (1)

Quigley was an important proponent of a pontoon bridge to cross the MISSISSIPPI RIVER. He believed it would be easy to construct approaches from both sides of the river toward the middle. Just short of the main channel, the construction would stop. The span between the two approaches would be filled by a large, flat-bottomed barge tied to the roadway. One end of the pontoon would be detachable enabling an engine and cable to swing it sideways to let riverboats pass up or downstream.

The idea was finally reject in favor of a high bridge that would allow boats to pass underneath.

See: Charles A. QUIGLEY



1. "The Defeat of Dr. Quigley," Dubuque Herald, October 12, 1878, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18781012&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

Oldt, Franklin T. History of Dubuque County, Iowa. Chicago: Western Historical Company, 1880, p. 860