Portrait: Governors Photograph Album, 1879, PSA
Born at Middleton, Teesdale, County Durham, England January 17, 1822; educated in common schools; apprenticed and employed as a blacksmith; and married Mary Brown. Parker came to America about 1850 with his wife and three children, settling near Buckville, near Tamaqua, Schuylkill County. He was first employed in the blacksmith business; pursued the printing trade as owner of the Anthracite Monitor; purchased the Mahanoy Valley Record in 1871 (Parker’s Record); and converted the journal to the Tri-Weekly Record of Mahanoy City. John Parker served as school director, notary public, president of the Schuylkill Press Association, 1890; and in 1874, a director of the Fidelity Building and Loan Association of Mahanoy City. The senator’s wife died before 1880, and he married second, Ann (maiden unknown). He was a member of the Protestant Episcopal Church.