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from Biography & Historical Record of Ringgold County, Iowa

Lewis Publishing Company of Chicago, 1887, p. 386



Civil War Flags.jpg Abs. BAIRD resides on section 1, Clinton Township, and is one of the well-known and leading pioneers of Ringgold County. he was born in Putnam County, Indiana, December 3, 1831. His father, John BAIRD, was a son of Samuel BAIRD, a native of Scotland, and was born in Virginia. His mother, Martha (MOORE) BAIRD, was a native of Kentucky. They were married in Indiana and were pioneers of Putnam County, locating in the heavy timber near Putnamville. They reared a family of six children - Samuel, Sarah Jane, Hartley, Mary, Absalom and Martha.

Abs. resided in Putnam County until he grew to manhood. His early life was passed in assisting on the farm and in attending the common schools in the log school-houses of that day.

After reaching his majority he was engaged in clerking in a store for four years. In 1856 he came to Iowa by team, and was on the road thirty days.

He first located upon 120 acres of wild land that his father had entered from the Government in 1853. He was married January 1, 1860 [Redding, Iowa], to Miss Isabella POOR, a lady of high cultures and education, who was a successful teacher and taught the first school in Clinton and Middle Fork townships. She was a daughter of Alvin POOR, a prominent pioneer of Ringgold County.

A short time after his marriage Mr. BAIRD built a frame house 16 x 16, the first frame house built in the township. Here he has since resided and improved his land from time to time as his means would premit, and has added to his acres utnil he has a splendid farm of 565 acres. It is divided into fields for the convenience of stock, and a modern wind-mill furnishes his stock with an abundance of pure water. He has a good, well-furnished house, barn, out-buildings for stock, an orchard of 150 bearing trees, and small fruits. He makes a specialty of stock-raising and feeding, usually keeping from 100 to 150 head of cattle.

Mr. and Mrs. BAIRD are the parents of ten living children - William A., Ida R., Julia B., Alice E. Samuel C., Bertha M., James Claude, Charles A., Roy and Day. Two are deceased: John E. died at the age of twenty-one years, and Rufus died at the age of twelve years.

Mr. BAIRD has served creditably as township trustee, assessor, member of the Board of Supervisors, and was township clerk ten years. He has been a Republican since 1856. Postoffice, Redding.

NOTE: Isabella's father Alvin POORE was born in Byfield, Essex County, Massachusetts on July 30, 1803. He was a shoemaker early in life, then worked as a cooper, and then a farmer during the latter part of his life. A constant reader and deeply devoted to Christianity, Mr. POORE frequently delivered the town's Fourth of July oration and was a minister with the Methodist Church for approximately five years. On September 26, 1833, Alvin married Julia (DeWITT) ZARING, the widow of Eli ZARING. Julia was born in New York City November 27, 1812. Julia and Eli's son, also named Eli, died at the age of twenty-two years in 1850, Donaldsonville, Louisana, from yellow fever. In the fall of 1856, Alvin and Julia moved to Ringgold County, Iowa, settling on the on the west fork of the Grand River, in the vicinity of the future town of Redding. Avin died at the age of 58 years on January 20, 1862. Julia died at the age of 62 years on July 25, 1875. They were interred at Fairview Cemetery near Redding, Iowa.

Absalom's grandfather Samuel F. BAIRD was born April 26, 1762 in Augusta County, Virginia, and died December 22, 1840, Lincoln County, Missouri. Samuel was a veteran of the Revolutionary War. His first-born of nine children was John BAIRD, born February 21, 1789, Augusta County, Virginia, and died June 5, 1871, Redding, Ringgold County, Iowa. John married Martha MOORE in Putnman County, Indiana on August 1, 1824.

Absalom M. BAIRD was born December 3, 1831, Green Castle, Putnam County, Indiana, and died November 19, 1904, Redding, Ringgold County, Iowa. Isabella (POORE) BAIRD was born in Washington County, Indiana on July 17, 1840, and died June 14, 1915, Redding, Ringgold County, Iowa. Absalom and Isabella were interred in the Abarr Cemetery, now known as the Fairview Cemetery, near Redding, Ringgold County, Iowa.

Absalom served with Company C of the Southern Border Brigade during the Civil War.

Absalom and Isabella (POORE) were the parents of twelve children:

1) Julia Belle BAIRD
    born 26 Jan 1867, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA; died 11 Apr 1953, Redding, Ringgold Co., IA
    married Orin Gilbert SPENCER 03 Jul 1890, Ringgold Co. IA
               born 24 Jul 1868, Piatt Co. IL; died 07 Jun 1947, Creston Hospital, Union Co. IA
               son of James Whitney "Jimmie" SPENCER, Jr., born 16 Jul 1835, Greene Co. OH
    Julia Belle (BAIRD) and Orin Gilbert SPENCER interred Rose Hill Cemetery, Mount Ayr IA
    Children of Julia Belle (BAIRD) and Orin Gilbert SPENCER:
      1) Flavel Doil SPENCER, born 31 May 1891; died 29 Jul 1891
      2) Goldia Belle SPENCER, born 05 Jun 1892, Delphos IA; died 27 Sep 1972, Ringgold Co. IA
          married Roy Berry SHEUMAKER 08 Mar 1914, Ringgold Co. IA
                     born 04 Dec 1887; died circa 1979, Mount Ayr, Ringgold Co. IA
          Goldia and Roy interred Fairview Cemetery, Ringgold Co. IA
      3) Gladys Mae SPENCER, born 11 Oct 1894; died 27 Nov 1947
          married Fredrick "Fred" ADAIR (1891-1950)
      4) Flavel D. SPENCER
          born 31 May 1891; died 29 Jul 1891
      5) Lyle Alvin SPENCER, born 11 Jul 1896, Redding IA; died 14 Apr 1976
          married Maye BROTT
      5) Clifford Orin SPENCER, born 23 Aug 1898, Redding IA; died 12 Jan 1997
      6) Letha Marie SPENCER, born 26 Jan 1900, Redding IA; died 08 Jun 1992
      7) Ida Laurel SPENCER, born 14 Mar 1901; died 12 Jan 1997
      8) John Baird SPENCER, born 23 Feb 1904; died 15 May 2001
2) William Alvin BAIRD
    born 23 May 23 1861, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA, died 24 Oct 1929, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA
3) Ida Rosella BAIRD
    born 21 Jun 1862, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA, died 16 Feb 1957
4) John Elmer BAIRD
    born 04 Jul 1863, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA, d. October 27, 1883, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA
    interment Fairview Cemetery near Redding, Ringgold Co. IA
5) Rufus Hartley BAIRD
    born 15 Jun 1865, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA, d. April 29, 1877
    interment Fairview Cemetery near Redding, Ringgold Co. IA
6) Alice Emma BAIRD
    born 29 Oct 1869, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA, died 22 Nov 1955
7) Samuel C. BAIRD
    born 1871, Redding, Ringgold Co. IA; died 1926, inter: Fairview Cemetery
8) Bertha Mae BAIRD
    born 29 Apr 1873; died 15 Apr 1915
9) James Claude BAIRD
10) Absalom Roy BAIRD
    born 22 Jun 1882, near Redding IA; died 22 Aug 1933
    married Lyda MAJOR 20 Feb 1907, daughter of Reuben and Kennie MAJOR
               born 18 Sep 1880 near Windsor MO; died 23 Oct 1955
    Roy and Lyda interred Fairview Cemetery near Redding, Ringgold Co. IA
Roy was a founder of the Delphos School District and served on the first board of education. The family struggled through the Great Depression, bitter winters, drought, and the tornado of 1926. They were the parents for three sons - Glenn, Charles, and Richard - who were educated at the Delphos School their father founded.
11) A. Day BAIRD
    born 29 Mar 1871; died 01 Apr 1923, inter: Fairview Cemetery near Redding IA
12) Charles A. BAIRD
    born 1877; died age 11 years, 4 months and 11 days on 04 Aug 1888
    interment Fairview Cemetery near Redding, Ringgold Co. IA

Biography & Historical Record of Ringgold County, Iowa, p. 386, 1887.

WPA Graves Survey

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

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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