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from Biography & Historical Record of Ringgold County, Iowa

Lewis Publishing Company of Chicago, 1887, p. 353


Civil War Flags.jpg J[oseph] W. ABARR, farmer, section 16, Clinton Township, is one of the old pioneers of the county, having been indentified with its interests for more than thirty years. He was born in Murray County, Tennessee, October 1, 1816. His father, John B. ABARR, was a native of France [some family records indicate he was born in Canada] and served in the War of 1812. His mother, Rhoda (WILSON) ABARR, was a native of North Carolina. They were married in Murray County, and reared a family of five children, all sons - J. W., John B., Richard L., Bartley R. and D. C. When our subject was a few weeks old his parents removed to Gallatin County, in the then Territory of Illinois, being among the early pioneers of that county. They remained here four years, and then removed to White County, where the father died, in 1834. His early life was spent in assisting on the farm and attending the subscription schools of that day. November 26, 1834, he was united in marriage with Miss Rebecca N. SMITH, a native of White County, and daughter of Carter and Ruth (DAGLEY) SMITH. In 1848 Mr. ABARR, with wife and two children, removed to Whiteside County, Illinois, where he resided until the spring of 1856, when, with two brothers, B[artley] R. and D[aniel] C., and their mother, he came to Iowa, arriving in Ringgold County, April 30, and settled upon his present farm. He had visited the place the year previous and purchased the farm from one Tom LOVELL. There were forty acres of land, upon which a log cabin had been constructed. He entered 160 acres from the Government on section 16. He added to his farm from time to time, until at one time he owned 1,000 acres. He has sold and divided among his children, until his famr now consists of 400 acres of well-cultivated and well-improved land. He has a comfortable house, corn barn, 40 x 42 feet, sixteen-foot posts, the farm of all native timber. He is extensively engaged in stock-raising and feeding.

Mr. and Mrs. ABARR are the parents of five children - John C., who served during the late [Civil] War in the Forty-third Missouri; W. S.; Helen, now Mrs. G. W. SPENCE; Alice, now Mrs. J. R. STEVENS; and Halley. Five children are deceased - Huston, the fourth child, died at the age of twenty years; Electa Ann, died at the age of three years; Solon G., died at the age of two years; and James H., died at the age of one year.

Durin the late war Mr. ABARR enlisted in Company I, Fifth Missouri Cavalry. His two brothers, John B. and B[artley] R., and a nephew, W[illiam] R. ABARR, were in the same regiment.

Mrs. ABARR died August 31, 1885.

Politically Mr. ABARR is a Republican. He voted for General FREMONT in this county in 1856. Postoffice, Redding.

NOTE: Joseph W. ABARR died April 24, 1904. Rebecca N. (SMITH) ABARR was born August 18, 1827, and died of consumption at her home August 31, 1885. Joseph and Rebecca were interred at Fairview Cemetery, Ringgold County, Iowa.

Fairview Cemetery transcriptions note that Joseph served during the Civil War with Company I of the 5th Missouri Cavalry.

Joseph and Rebecca were the parents of nine children:

1) John C. ABARR, Civil War Veteran
    Born: 12 Sep 1845; Died 19 Jun 1936, Fairview Cemetery
    Private with Company D, 43rd Missouri Infanty of Union Army
2) W. S. ABARR
4) Huston S. ABARR
    Born: 1855; Died: age 20 years, 26 Aug 1875, Interment Fairview Cemetery
    Born: Jan 1879; Died: 05 Aug 1880, Interment Fairview Cemetery
6) Electa Ann ABARR
    Born 05 Apr 1858; Died 29 Jan 1860, Interment Fairview Cemetery
7) Halley ABARR
8) Solon G. ABARR
    Died at age of two years, 20 May 1869, Interment Fairview Cemetery
9) James N. ABARR
    Born: 1867; Died: 21 Jun 1868, Interment Fairview Cemetery
Biography & Historical Record of Ringgold County, Iowa, p. 352, 1887.

Civil War Solders and Sailors System Database

WPA Graves Survey

Transcription and note by Sharon R. Becker, January of 2009

Biographical Sketches Pages Index: A - F,   G - L,   M - R,  S - Z

To submit your Ringgold County biographies, contact Sharon R. Becker at
Please include the word "Ringgold" in the subject line. Thank you.

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