Note    H1176         Index

Apparently "Eddie" and Pearly Pigott named their fourth child after
two of the children of his brother John J. Pigott, namely, Cecelia Es ther
and Loretta May. See FHL 1508628 for 1/8/83 for obituary notice for Ed
Pigott, husband of Cecelia May Pigott.


Note    H1177         Index

BIRTH: Cecelia Esther Pigott was born on May 3, 1906 in Cherokee Township, Cherokee County, Iowa. See Iowa Birth Certificate #189, State Board of Health, County of Cherokee Sheridan Township. (In possession of James J. Sparks, San Carlos, CA)

BAPTISM: Cecelia Pigott was baptized on May 4, 1906 in Cherokee , Iowa by Father W. P. Desmond. Witnesses were Edward Joseph Pigott, her uncle, and Margaret Noonan, a family friend.

MARRIAGE: Cecelia was married to Joseph John Sparks on June 14, 1925, at St. Anthony's Catholic Church, Long Beach, California. See California Dept. of Health Services, Cert. of Marriage No. 25-0 15598; State Index No. 1236, local registered no. 6813 (In possession of James J. Sparks, San Carlos, CA)

DEATH: Cecelia Esther (Pigott) Sparks died in Long Beach, Los Angeles County, California, on March 16, 1974. See California Death Cert. Dept. of Public Health (In possession of James J. Sparks, San Carlos, CA)

The following article appeared in the Long Beach Sun Newspaper ca . June 17, 1925: "Miss Cecilia (sic) Pigott And Joseph Sparks Married at Church"

"One of the pretty weddings of the week was that at which Miss Cecilia (sic) Catherine (sic) Pigott, daughter of Mr. and Mrs . J. J. Pigott, 227 Daisy Avenue, became the bride of Joseph Sparks of Long Beach Monday morning at 6:30 o'clock in St. Anthony's Church . Father William O'Donnel officiated in the presence of a group of friends and relatives and a large number of parishioners who were assembling for the 8 o'clock mass. The bride was attired in white as was also her sister, Mrs. Loretta Bass, who was matron of honor . The bridal bouquet was of loveliest roses. The best man was Edwin Tyo, brother-in-law of the bride. After the ceremony a wedding breakfast was served at the Pigott home for the bridal party, the relatives and a few intimate friends. The rooms were decked with a variety of June blossoms. A delicious looking nuptial cake was placed before the bride. Mr. and Mrs. Sparks are spending their honeymoon in Portland, Seattle and Glacier National Park. They will return in two weeks to live in Long Beach where Mr. Sparks is proprietor of a tailoring establishment. Mrs. Sparks has attended the California College of Commerce for the past two years."

"Celia" Pigott Sparks was 5 feet tall and weighed 101 pounds during her younger years. She began working at the Star Cleaners at 3139 E. 7th Street in Long Beach, California, prior to her marriage in order to help her future husband "Joe" Sparks who had acquired the business in his early twenties. She continued to work there until the mid 1940s with breaks only incidental with the birth of her two sons, James in 1927 and Thomas in 1930. She considered housekeeping boring and repetitive. She did not like cooking and, on those occasions when she was away from the Star Cleaners, she would have all of the household chores completed by Tuesday noon of each week and would be looking for something to do.

Celia was very bright and had a good head for business. She and Joe worked eight to ten hours six days a week at the cleaners, often making only $20 or $25 for a week's work. During the depression they were able to maintain their home and send their sons to a parochial school and provide music lessons as well. Housekeepers were hired to look after the boys between the time school let out and Celia and Joe got home. Just before the commencement of WWII they had a new home built at 3801 Rose Avenue within a mile of their original property at 1016 E. 36th Street in Long Beach. Within a year irreconcilable differences caused Celia and Joe to divorce.

Celia took the boys, 14 and 12 with her and she purchased a small residence at 834 Obispo Avenue, just over one block from the Star Cleaners. She was working at Modern Cleaners at the time. Within a few years she had built sufficient equity in her home to collateralize a loan that enabled her to purchase the duplex commercial building at 7th and Obispo including the Star Cleaners and the L shaped lot surrounding it. She converted the space adjacent to the Cleaners into an apartment into which she moved and she rented her former residence at 834 Obispo to tenants. Within a few years she was able to construct an 8 unit apartment building on 7th Street next to the Cleaners building. Her ultimate plan was to tear down the Cleaners building and build an additional 8 units, live in one of them and retire.

Unfortunately, Celia had contracted cancer some time earlier, probably as a result of using carbon tetrachloride, a carcinogenic chemical incidental with her work as a "spotter" removing spots from garments sent to the cleaners. Eventually she was forced to sell all of her property and move into a small apartment near St. Matthew's Catholic Church on 7th and Temple, just a few blocks from her earlier property. It was the same school that James and Thomas attended during their elementary years. Celia was quite religious and gained a great deal of strength from her faith as her health continued to fail. After several surgeries and years of fighting the cancer, she succumbed to it on March 16, 1974. She was buried in All Souls Cemetery in Long Beach. Father Joseph P. Lynch officiated at her funeral. He was the Pastor of St. Matthew's Church and School when James and Thomas attended some 40 years earlier.

For additional information concerning Cecelia (Pigott) Sparks and her parents and family, see the Notes for Joseph J. Sparks.