I found what I think is the 1900 census listing for your Arthur. Kansas City Ward 6, District 54, Jackson Co., MO, lists the following family:
Fanning, J.R. male age 40, born Oct. 27, 1859
Arthur, son, age 12, born Aug. 28, 1887
May, daughter, age 9, born January 12, 1891
On the line for J.R. it states he is head of the household, Widower, and 13 years for length of marriage. There is a 2 crossed out which was probably the answer to the question posed to women about how many children they had and how many of those were living. J.R.'s line also gives the info that he was born in MO and his parents in Tennessee, but the info for his children says the same, which can't be right. If he was born in MO then Arthur's and May's info should read MO MO ? for wherever their mother was born.
I tried searching the 1880 census for J.R. Fanning, but came up with no matches. Have you checked Arthur's death certificate? If the person who provided the information for that certificate knew the names of Arthur's parents they should be listed.
I'm sure we're related; maybe not closely, but my maiden name is Fanning and I'm originally from Morgan Co., IL. Hope this helps.
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