User Home Page Genealogy Report: Descendants of Hans Bar
Descendants of Hans Bar
Generation No. 1
was born 1545 in Hausen, Switzerland, and died 1614.He married K
The Early Barr's
The first Barr who appears to be a family member is Hans Bar.Hans was born in 1545 in the village of Hausen, which is on the northern side of the present day city of Zurich, Switzerland.There are also early references to living at Baar, which is located near Zug.Baar is a small town about half way between Lucerne and Zurich.In Hans day this area of northern Switzerland probably spoke German and were greatly influenced by the Germans.At that time Switzerland was not considered a strong military power.They had no standing army as such.Each valley was somewhat isolated and was very independent.Each region or canton spoke the language of the country they joined or traded with and generally left each other alone.There is not a significant Swiss language.They generally spoke German, Italian, French or Austrian depending on their Geographic location.
A key landlocked nation in Central Europe, Switzerland is bordered on the north by Germany, on the east by Austria and the tiny principality of Liechtenstein, on the south by Italy, and on the west by France. Its north-south maximum extent is about 137 miles (220 kilometers), while its east-west stretch is roughly 225 miles (360 kilometers), for a total area of less than 16,000 square miles (41,400 square kilometers).
Excerpted from Compton’s Interactive Encyclopedia
Copyright © 1993, 1994 Compton’s NewMedia, Inc.
Switzerland was inhabited in 850 BC by Celts in the west and by Rhaetians on the east.From AD 101 to 450 Celtics, Rhaetians and Romans lived together in peace.The Romans improved the cities in which they were located.Numerous limited invasions followed by the Alemannions, Celts, Franks and Romans.They were again invaded in the 11th century by a German dominated Holy Roman Empire.By the end of the 13th century the Hapsburgs were the dominate force.They controlled the country for several hundred years.Switzerland eventually formed a perpetual alliance with each canton and supported each other under a curtain of neutrality.
The Barr Name
One of the Bar, Barr, Bear, or Barr names has been used in the Zurich area since early times.It is believed that all of them mean Bear, i.e. a brown bear, etc.Probably because of religious persecution and perhaps other reasons, some of the family moved to the Palatinate area before emigrating to the United States in the early 1700's.The Palatinate is the southern area of Germany.It is the Black Forest, Bavaria, and the Munich area.The Rhine river separates Switzerland and Germany.Zurich joins the Rhine and probably was the road for the Bears,They probably traveled the Rhine to Rotterdam, Holland then sailed to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
In The United States
After reaching the United States, the family moved westward across Pennsylvania to Lancaster.This was a Bear community made up of Bars from Switzerland, Germany, England and Scotland.They kept records of the Bear family and Eventually a newsletter was published.A newsletter is still being published and costs only a few dollars a year. (Monta Ray has the address as well as 20 to 30 years of newspapers).The newsletter has been a valuable source of information in this development of the Southwest Missouri Barrs.
Moving To Virginia
The family's first major relocation in their new country was to move to the mountainous area of Rockingham, Virginia.This is still today a remote area in the Shenandoah mountains running along the Virginia/West Virginia border.At this time in history it was estimated that 20% of the population of the United States lived in Virginia (1800 population count).
Monroe County Tennessee
After a few years in Virginia, part of the family plus some of their friends wanted to move on down the Appalachian Mountains.They resettled to another remote mountainous area in Monroe County Tennessee.This area is southwest of Knoxville off Highway 411.Grandfather Robert Barr's Father, John Newton Barr and his Father James A. Barr were born in Monroe County.James A's Father Adam Barr was born in nearby Jefferson County
On To Missouri
Just a few years prior to the Civil War several Tennessee families moved from Tennessee to Missouri.Newton Barr stopped for a few years in Lockwood Missouri (About 30 miles northwest of Springfield).Our Grandfather Robert was born there on December 2, 1879.Newt decided to join Uncle Scott and some other families, so he moved about 100 miles south to Exeter, Missouri.Newt ran a blacksmith shop in Exeter.They were joined by Grandfather James A. Barr, plus other friends and neighbors from Tennessee.
The status of James A. Barr becomes clouded at this time.When did James and Susan arrive in Missouri?It appears to have been 1857.Winfield Scott was born in Missouri on December 28, 1857.If Tennessee Lee was born in Missouri in 1855 or Thomas Isaac in 1853 this could put James in Missouri 5 to 7 years earlier (About 1853).James seems to have left Exeter about 1860 to as late as 1862.James A. Barr is listed in the 1860 Federal Census of Barry County Missouri.James was age 40 and his wife Susan Taylor Barr was 39.Nine of their ten children are listed as follows:
Name (Not part of Census)
Thonas Isaac ( Other list show him as the first born in Missour in 1853)
Tennessee Lee (Other list show her born in Missouri in 1855)
Winfield Scott (Born in Missouri in 1855)
Infant Not Named
Virginia I (Jenny born May 23, 1860 in Barry County Missouri)
Vestia the tenth child was not born until 1862 in Missouri.The age is recorded under Barry County, Liberty township, June 29, 1860.
Grandmother Susan Taylor Barr
Susan is listed in the Barry County Census of 1860 as a 39 year old housewife with nine children.The youngest is Virginia I. born May 24, 1860.Vestai, the tenth child was born in Missouri in 1862.There isn't much on Susan for the next few years.She is listed on the 1870 census as 47 years old and as an unmarred head of household.She moved from Liberty Township to Shoal Creek Township.This was a short move to just east of Exeter.There are six children still living at home: Newton age 22, Thomas Isaac age 17, Tennessee age 15, Winfred Scott age 12, Virginia age 10, and Vestia age 7 as of June 30, 1870.
Early Reference to the Barrs
Now that we have seen the overall migration pattern to Missouri we will return to Switzerland and learn more about the early Bars.There are several early notes of Bars just south of the present city of Zurich Switzerland.There were several early references to Rifferswil Canton.As an example, the Romans built a highway called "Albis Strasse" that ran from Zurich to Bar through Rifferswil.This was in 58 BC when Julius Caesar took land from the Celtics.In 1019 the Bars were again identified with Rifferswil of Renfried.In 1179 another reference was made to the Bars of Rifferswil.Rifferswil is still there located about 10 miles south of Zurich and five miles from the town of Bar.Bar is an old but very well restored city that hasn't changed much since the early days.Bar is reported to be very rustic and scenic.Nearby is the city of Zug.It is more modern and is reported to have the highest per capita income in Switzerland.
In 1339, following the Laupen war against the Hapsburgs, George of Verzliken released his right of oversight of the estate of Ober of Rifferswil.In 1344 Heinrich Baar of Rifferswil was recorded as one of the two stewards of this property.In 1412 Rudy Baar gave his nephew Hans Baar, a custodian of Rifferswill, two acres of land in Dulacher.In 1517 six Baar brothers from Hauptikon (Peter, Hans, Heinrich, Uli, Oswald and Heidi) were obligated to pay Klosher Chappel a yearly rent consisting of both money and produce.
The Bars apparently took a very strong position on the Anabaptist movement.The final struggle against the Anabaptist occurred in Zurich canton between 1633 to 1645.The Anabaptist faith originated in Switzerland in 1522.Anabaptist do not believe in infant baptism.They practice baptism only for adults.A second baptism is required if the child was baptized as an infant.Anabaptist means "Baptism Again".The Anabaptist were considered to be radicals of the Reformation period, both for their views on baptism and because they rejected the involvement of the Church in government matters.Church groups today that trace their roots back to the original Anabaptist were the Mennonites and the Amish.
The 1633 Rifferswil census listed 182 adult Anabaptist.The 1634 census named 263 and gave the ages of the children.Eleven of the 54 families had the surname Bar as the family head.This included 4 Jacobs, 2 Heinrichs, and 1 each; Conrad, Felix, Hans, Peter, and Rudolf.In the next census in 1635 there were no Anabaptists listed in Rifferswil.This probably meant that all Bars listed as Anabaptist moved to a safer area and probably was the push to start the migration of the Bars to America.This type of family move apparently was not uncommon to this period of history.GF-3 Hans was 22 years old at this time.There were several Bar families moving through Pennsylvania.There were two major routes west.The northern route west through Ohio and Indiana, somewhat along today's I-70 highway.The southern route was selected by our family.It basically followed the Appalachian mountains through Virginia and Tennessee, somewhat along what route I-40 takes.
The early Bar history for the northern group centers about the ancestors of Christophel, Melchion, and Johannes Bar.They were referred to as the Phoenix immigrants.Several of the early pioneers are buried at Schlossers church cemetery in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania.
Fifty-eight Swiss Mignonettes were deported to Amsterdam in March 1710 to be taken by force to North Carolina.They escaped and returned to Palatinate.In 1717 at a Mignonette conference the decision was made to migrate to America.Three ship loads came to Philadelphia and moved to near Lancaster, Pennsylvania.The passenger list was lost without any record being made.A letter from Alsace listed 30 Anabaptist prisoners which included a Ulli Bar, Katherine Bar, Hans Heinrich Bar, Jacob Bar, and Hans Bar.
Five thousand acres were warranted to land agents November 22, 1717.Much of it was surveyed in March 1720 to recent immigrants Hans Bar, Jacob Bar, Martin Bar, and Jacob Hooker.This land joined the land of Samuel Bar.These Bars were probably the sons of John Jacob Bar whose name was on the list of land transfers on the Conestoga in 1721."Old Henry" Bar warranted 424 acres on the Conestoga river September 27, 1717.Jacob had 600 acres surveyed west of Hans Graeff the same month.Martin Bear was on the 1721 tax list.These notes were recorded from Jane Evans Best "Three Bears of Earl Township, Lancaster County, PA" and Pennsylvania Mennonite records.
The following notes were taken from Ben Franklin's Pennsylvania Gazette 17-28 August 1748.
He who careth not from whence he came, careth not whither he goeth.
We live in the present, We dream of the future, we learn eternal truths from the past.
Jacob Bear, Sr. offers reward for the recovery of mare strayed or stolen from his plantation.
Tracking the Bears
Tracking the Bears was greatly assisted by the ship records at the port of Philadelphia.A large number of the Bears passed through the Port of Philadelphia between 1730 and 1740.There may be some variations in spelling based on the language of the recorder or the ship steward.Apparently most of the Bears spoke German.Some of the ship logs noted as having "Bear" passengers are as follows:The ship Francis and Elizabeth docked at Philadelphia August 3, 1743 with Johannes and Jacob Bar and their families.The ship Dragon docked September 30, 1732 with Hans Bar, George Bar and Ulrich Bare.The ship Molley arriving from Rotterdam September 30, 1727 lists Samuel and Jacob Bare.The Ship Joyce landing November 30, 1730 lists John Bare age 40, Hans Jacob Bare age 11, Hendrich Bare age 6, Anna Maria age 43, and Maria Barbra age 16.The ship Priscilla arriving September 11, 1749 had Rudolph, Henry, Johanna and Jason.The Britanica landed in 1731 with passengers Elizabeth Kern age 55, and Katherine Kern age 22.The Plaesana listed Medley Bear age 20 and Frena Bear age 18.In 732 the Phoenix arriving September 30, 1743 had Michael Bar, Phillopus Bar, Johannes Bar, Melchoir Bar, Melchoir Jr., and Christaple Bar.The "Phoenix Four" will be noted in both Rochingham, Virginia and in Ohio and Indiana.
The Bar brothers were reported once as living at Brocks Gap.This is about 20 miles west ofLithia Springs."Whiskey Jacob" bought the farm from John Michael Brock who was one of the Valley's first settlers.The "Baron" signed as one of the three witnesses.The land records state in part "Henry Brock and his wife Mary, sell to Jacob Bear for 60 lb. 400A in Augusta County, on ye south fork of ye north river of Shanando above thee gap in yea mountain".(At this time, 1752, Jagley Jacob's son Jacob is 28 and John is 26.Jacob is our GF-5 from our start point of Hans Bar.
Adam Miller was probably the first to settle in the Rockingham County Virginia area.He and his family settled near the present city of Elkton in 7126.Adam Miller was born in Germany in 1703.He spent his early life dreaming about the new world.Adam's dream becamea reality when he and his young wife Barbara and his sister Catrina came to America in the summer of 1720.They landed at Philadelphia then spent some time near Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Adam was dissatisfied with the farming lands there.When he heard that there was better land in Virginia he decided to go see for himself.He left the womenfolk at home and made his way to Williamsburg, Virginia.In a tavern he met some men who spoke to him of a great valley which lay between two mountain ranges.They told him of a smooth flowing river, fertile land and an abundance of game.Going westward he came to the valley (Some say he found it by climbing a tree-I guess it doesn't matter).When he reached the valley floor he staked out a section (640 acres) to settle on.He returned to Lancaster to fetch his wife and sister.Little Henry was born and Barbara Ann was soon on the way.
This location proved unhealthy for his family.Adam then purchased 820 acres to the south along the Shenandoah river.This tract included a large spring of bubbling water.Adam built a cabin near the spring.Adam then began clearing land, planting crops and building out buildings from the trees he cut.A few years later Adam built a new cabin near the area where Elkton is today.He selected the logs with the greatest care.Adam was happy and proud of his new home.He called it Green Meadows.
Adam and Barbara Miller had not lived an easy life.The threat of Indian attack was always near.John Rhodes, a neighbor, and his wife and five children were all killed by Indians just over the hill from Adam's cabin.A few dayslater Adam's son, Adam Jr. was killed by Indians.
Adam and Barbara Millers two daughters had married the Bear brothers, Jacob and John.The Bears still lived in the Brocks Gap area.Adam began a plan to transfer his land, to include the springs, to his daughter Barbara.The agreement between him and Jacob Barr is noted in a later paragraph.
Daughter Catherine and John Bear settled at Mill Place which is near Staunton.Adam's son Henry married Elizabeth Coogler and they settled near the homeplace.As a result of the marriages between the Bear and Miller families they became closely interwoven.Some of these families moved on to Tennessee then to Missouri.Some of the Miller/Bear descendants such as the Kempers, Gibbons, Yanceys, Hopkins, Mauzys and the Harnsbergers still live in East Rockingham.
In the fall of1764 Adam became tired of the strain of living on thefrontier.Adam was 61 years old.He said he had spent the last 40 years looking for greener pastures, staking out garden plots, building houses, raising crops, hunting for food and generally just staying alive.He decided he would take things a little easier and retire.He offered Jacob Barr his 240 acres if Jacob would let him live in the new house for the remainder of his life.Jacob was also to provide him a current supply of:
Barley and Wheat
33 Gallons of Whiskey a year
Jacob accepted the offer on September 28, 1764.He may have been swayed by his wife Anna Barbara Miller Barr, who is Adams Daughter.
John The "Baron" Barr
John remained at Brocks Gap.Historian Harry Strickler wrote that John Barrs "was on Fort Run, about a mile west of the village of Timberville, on the road to Raders Church".This is about six miles east of Brocks Gap and 18 northwest of Jacob's new home.In the 1789 "John Waylans history of Rockingham County Virginia", John Barr is listed as owning 836 acres of land.He was listed as one of the largest landholders in the county.John "The Baron" bought 616 more acres on the north Shenadoah river on June 6, 1769.He added 630 more acres in 1770.
of Hans Bar and Kathrina Huber is:
, b. 1580, Hausen, Switzerland; d. 1634.
World Family Tree Project
Genealogy Message Boards
Download a Free Demo
Copyright 1996, Broderbund Software, Inc.All rights reserved.