James B. Nugent was active in the American piano industry in the last half of the 19th Century. He is first listed at 524 Third Avenue, New York City, in 1869. Nugent was at first a dealer in pianos and musical instruments, but soon started building pianos under his own name. In 1880, his firm was listed as James B. Nugent & Company at 142 East 36th Street, New York City. Nugent primarily built upright and square pianos, and possibly melodeons and organs as well. James Nugent retired from the industry in about 1885, but his successors continued the company, building pianos under the Nugent name until about 1913.