Eli Jefferson Goar, the leading druggist of Kirklin and one of its most prominent citizens, comes from sturdy Irish and German stock. The first member of the family of whom we have any record is Henry Goar, who lived in Shenandoah County, Virginia, He was twice married and one of his sons for seventeen years represented his district in the State Legislature. By his second wife, Catherine Kelley, he had five children: The eldest of these, Joseph, married Martha Pine, by whom he had eleven children; the remaining four were Robert, Nancy, James and Henry. The grandfather of our subject, Joseph Goar, was born in Virginia in 1810, and freeing his slaves removed to Pennsylvania, where he married Catherine Goar, a third cousin. They afterward immigrated to Tipton County, Indiana, and purchased 300 acres of land. Mr. Goar served as County Judge, and was a prominent and influential citizen. The family numbered fifteen children, and with one exception all are living. They are: James M; Sallie, wife of John Epard; Jefferson; Martha, wife of Jeremiah Batterton, died at Bowling Green, Kentucky, in 1862; Eli J., born March 20, 1839, married Emily Mott; Levi V., born March 20, 1839, married Delilah Fisher; Nancy L., born January 25, 1841, married Isaac Paul, who died in 1893; Benjamin F., born April 1, 1843, married Laura Thompson; Amanda J., born May 19, 1845, is the wife of Curt Parker; Louisa, C., born May 19, 1845, is the wife of John Kelley of Harrisburg, Arkansas; Emily M., born September 22, 1847, is the wife of Aaron White; William H., born March 31, 1849; Matt A., born September 1, 1851, married Ada Fullerton, and after her death wedded Hattie Moses; John Jessie, born November 15, 1854; and Catherine C., married July 4, 1883, to Fred Mekum. The father of this family was a Democrat until 1856, when he became a Whig, and later a Republican. He represented his district for one term in the State Legislature, and since 1869 he has resided in Minnesota. His wife died in 1886.
James M. Goar, father of E. J., was born in Tipton County, Indiana, and lived at home until twenty-two years of age, when he went to Iowa, and secured property with land warrants of the War of 1812. After locating 160 acres he returned to Indiana, and in 1858 married Priscilla Batterton, who was born in Shelby County in 1840. By their union they had two children: Joseph W., who was born September 17, 1859, and married Emma Robbins; and Eli Jefferson. On the twenty-seventh of April 1861, James M. Goar enlisted in Company B, Seventy-fifth Indiana Infantry, and died at Murfreesboro, February t, 1863. His remains were interred in Hill Cemetery in this county. His brother-in-law, Jeremiah Batterton, also died in the army, and was buried at the same time. Mr. Goar belonged to the Baptist Church, was a man of quiet and generous disposition, a god citizen, and had the respect and confidence of the entire community. In 1872, his wife wedded A. C. Littleton, by whom she had one son, Thaddeus S., who died at the age of four years. Her death occurred in October 1887. The husband is still living in Sugar Creek Township. Her brother, Jeremiah, served as a second lieutenant during the late war and was wounded at Mill Springs, Kentucky, from the effects of which he afterward died. Her brother James enlisted as a private in 1861, served throughout the war, and was twice wounded in battle.
Eli J. Goar, whose name heads this record, was born in Tipton County, Indiana, April 27, 1861, and remained upon the farm until eighteen years of age. He attended the common schools and the high school at Frankfort, then entered the Danville Central Normal College, and at the age of eighteen began teaching, which he successfully followed for a time. In connection with his brother he then embarked in general merchandising at Pickard's Mill, where for three years they carried on a successful business. Mr. Goar was married March 12, 1882, to Orpha Louisa King, who was born July 23, 1861, and is a daughter of James and Polly (Mary Winship) King. They have three children - James Vernon, born December 27, 1882; Everett Logan, born November 13, 1886; and Edith Lou, born December 2, 1891. In 1884, Mr. Goar sold his store and removed to the farm belonging to his father-in-law, which he continued to cultivate until 1891, when, on account of his wife's failing health, he left the farm. During the succeeding year the taught school at Forest, and in 1892 came to Kirklin. Being appointed Deputy County Treasurer, he then removed to Frankfort, where he remained until December 1893, when we again find him in Kirklin. Here he formed a partnership with G. T. Williams, under the firm name of Goar & Williams, and purchased the drug stock of W. W. Wild. They have a finely appointed store, handle everything found in a first-class establishment of the kind, and now have a large business. Mr. Goar also owns a farm of ninety-two acres, under a high state of cultivation and well improved with all modern conveniences. He is a member of the Masonic Lodge, and of the Camp of the Sons of Veterans, both of Kirklin. In politics he is a Republican, and takes a deep interest in the success and growth of his party, but has never sought office.
William King, grandfather of Mrs. Eli J., Goar, was born in Rockbridge County, Virginia, October 1, 1777. He removed from Virginia to Rock Castle County, Kentucky, about 1795 and was married to Mary Evans in 1799. He removed from Kentucky to Rush County, Indiana, in 1835, and died December 7, 1837. Mary, wife of William King, was born in North Carolina April 16, 1785, removed to Kentucky when about twelve years old, there married and removed from Kentucky to Rush County, Indiana, in 1833, and in 1839 to Clinton County, Indiana, and died April 10, 1847. The children born to Mr. and Mrs. William King were named as follows: James, born December 20, 1808, in Pulaski County, Kentucky; Mary, born in Fayette, Indiana, January 17, 1817. James and Mary Winship were married March 5, 1835. Thomas S. born January 25, 1836, and died May 4, 1859. William L., born March 21, 1838, and married August 26, 1863. Jesse W., born June 10, 1841, married October 11, 1866, died December 16, 1890. Celia, born October 22, 1843, and was married May 4, 1869 and Mary J., born January 16, 1847, married November 21, 1883. Louisa, born December 25, 1849, married October 4, 1874. Martha A., born June 29, 1852, died February 1, 1853. John C., born November 15, 1856, married November 9, 1879. Orpha L. is now Mrs. E. J. Goar.
Jesse Winship, the maternal grandfather, was born in the State of New York, April 22, 1787, and moved to Brookville, Indiana, when about twenty years of age and married Celia Leforge in 1811, then moved to Connersville, Indiana, and in 1821 he moved to Rush County, Indiana; died November 18, 1854. Celia (Laforge) Winship, born in New Jersey, May 23, 1793, died August 12, 1854, was the mother of ten children, six sons and four daughters, who were living at her death, which was the first broken link of the family circle. The family always stood deservedly high in the community.