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Re: John Burl Harger, 1803 - 1885, Washingto County, AL
Posted by: Penelope Monroe (ID *****7765) Date: June 08, 2012 at 21:33:52
In Reply to: Re: John Burl Harger, 1803 - 1885, Washingto County, AL by Sandra Stephens of 65329

Hi Sandra, thank you for your fast response to my posting. There certainly is a lot of information out there on John Harger. I believe that this in indeed John Burl Harger's father, but he is not mentioned in the will. I believe the John Burwell Harger mentioned is his grandson by one of his daughters.

My great uncle did some research on the Harger line many years ago, before internet, so I am sure a lot of the information is history that was passed down. His accounting of John Burl Harger, Sr. is as follows: "John Burl Harger, Sr., who lived to be 82 years old was born in 1803 and died July 25, 1885.

Records indicate that John Burl's father immigrated from Germany in the late 1700's and settled on a large tract of land in Maryland and raised his family there. I have no record of his wife's name, birth date, who or where they were married.

John Burl was born in 1803 and when he became of age moved to Virginia and worked in the trade as a Black Smith. Some time later he was joined by his brother George, and later they both moved to southwest Alabama. Some time later his brother George moved to Texas.

In 1836, John Burl settled in Washington County, Alabama and married Clara Anderson. Clara, a Cherokee (I believe this is a mistake, I think she was a Chocktaw) Indian was born in 1821, there were nine children born of this marriage as follows: John M. Harger 1840, Amanda M. Harger 1842, Goerge W. Harger 1845, Mary E. Harger 1847, Susan Harger (died at birth), Sara Harger 1852, William A. Harger 1854, Cathrine Harger, 1859, James Harger 1861.

John Burl moved his family to Quitman (Clarke County), Mississippi in the early 1850's, where he operated a Gun Smith and Black Smith Shop. In 1868 he sold out and moved back to Washington County, Alabama, near Healing Springs west of Milrey, Alabama. He owned and operated a farm and the old Healing Springs Inn, which was a Health Resort until his death on July 25, 1885.

John Burl's second marriage to Mary E. Miller, a Choctaw (I believe this is a mistake, I think she may have been Cherokee) Indian from Washington County. Mary was born June 12, 1841 and died January 5, 1993. There were four children from this marriage, as follows: Perry Ray Harger (This is my Great Grandfather 1872, Kizzie Emmeline Harger 1873, Alice Elizabeth Harger 1876, and John Burl Harger, Jr. 1880. I haven't any knowledge of records confirming the death of Clara his first wife, nor the date of the marriage to Mary his second wife."

As I noted in parentheses I believe the tribes were transposed by my uncle. I believe Clara's grandfather who was Choctaw was one of chief's signing the Dancing Rabbit Treaty.

My grandmother had always told us that we had American Indian in our lineage, but we have not been able to find any information regarding Mary Miller's Cherokee heritage.

There was a notation on one of the sites indicating that John Harger was very strict and that several of his son's left home as a result. There was a speculation that there was a step parent that caused John Burl to leave. Obviously, from my family information he left as a young man.

Also, I found an 1850 Clark County, MS census record which shows John B. Harger, Blacksmith, 40 yrs old, married to Elizabeth, 30 years old, three children, Martha b. 1835, John b. 1840 and Emeley b. 1844. This appears to be a second wife, however, ages of the children do not compute unless they are Clara's children. Mary's oldest child is born in 1872.

Thank you for pointing me in the right direction for John Harger, Franklin County, VA.

I have included the information from my Uncle in case it can help others connect some of the dots, I know there are some inaccuracies, but I do think the migration of John Burl is pretty close to what my Uncle has. My mother who will be 90 on July 5th, remembers visiting Bucaturnna, MA where her grandparents Perry Ray Harger and Kitsey Hollingshead Harger lived when she was a young girl. She amazes me with what she remembers. She has never really talked much about her family until my sister and I started asking questions and she is spot on with her answers. Mary Jane Harger Stone was Perry Ray's oldest daughter and my grandmother. She was a remarkable woman. She had a college degree, taught school and music. I remember some of the people in the community who could not read would bring papers for her to read to them. She had a remarkable character.

Thank you again for your help.


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