|New York Herald November 26, 1896, pg 14|
I happened upon another obituary for George W. Piggott, artist. It's as short as the other one, but it reveals some other clues and answers the question I had about why he was sent to America alone when he was a child.
George Piggott, a portrait artist and a native of South America, died last Sunday after an illness resulting from blood poisoning. His father, an American citizen, was killed during an uprising of slaves in the tropics, and the child was sent to the United States by the American Consul. He studied art in Rome, and was recently associated with the art department of a large New York firm.
Now if I can only find information on his father William Piggott, who was killed in a slave uprising.