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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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SAMUEL DARR, a well known citizen and agriculturalist of Monroe township, belongs to an old Cumberland county family. His grandfather was born in this county, and was a farmer near Newville, for many years, and died there. His children were: George, who died near Newville; Henry, who died in South Middleton township; Daniel, who died in Newville; and William, father of our subject, who died in Monroe township.

William Darr, born in the vicinity of Newville, learned the carpenter’s trade, and followed that for a number of years. After his marriage he located first at Plainfield, West Pennsboro township, and after two years went to South Middleton, and two years later to Frankford township. In the latter place he remained eight years, but in 1840, he settled permanently on the farm now occupied by his son Samuel, in Monroe township, where the remainder of his life was passed, his death occurring at the age of sixty-seven years. William Darr married Rebecca Margaret Diller, daughter of Casper Diller, of Monroe township, and they had these children born to them: William, who lost his life by drowning; Peter and Sarah both died in South Middleton township; John died in Carlisle: Samuel; David died in Virginia; Annie resides in Allegheny; Eliza is a resident of Carlisle; Israel died in Carlisle; Joseph died in Winchester, Va.; Henry resides at Harrisburg; and Margaret resides in Monroe township.

Samuel Darr was born in 1829, in South Middleton township, and obtained his education in the public schools, after which he learned the carpenter’s trade with his father, working with him until he was twenty-one years old. Mr. Darr then went to Virginia, but after a month there, returned to Pennsylvania and secured profitable employment in putting up coal breakers, in Schuylkill county, where he remained for fourteen years. His next move was into Snyder county, where he followed farming and also ran a small canal boat, until 1888, when he came to Monroe township. Here he owns a compact little farm, which engages his attention and supplies all his demands.

When he was about twenty-two years of age, Mr. Darr married Mary Matilda Minich, a daughter of Jacob and Sarah Minich, of Schuylkill county, and they had five children, the survivors being: Hilary A., who married Lewis Goodling, lives in Snyder county; Sarah A., who married George Myers, lives in South Middleton township; and Maggie M., who married Frank Pantery, lives in Carlisle; Jacob M. and Samuel Andrew both died in Snyder county. Both Mr. and Mrs. Darr are members of the German Reformed Church at Churchtown. Politically, Mr. Darr is a Republican, and was supervisor of Monroe township for five years.

That misfortune comes sometimes to those who have spent most exemplary lives, was proved by an occurrence which brought great loss and physical injury to Mr. and Mrs. Darr, on June 4, 1902. The community was shocked to learn that these most highly respected and esteemed residents, had been attacked by six burly tramps, who treated them with much severity in an attempt to find a large amount of money, which they had reason to think, had been paid to Mr. Darr a short time before. This amount they did not get, but before they escaped, they secured a valuable watch and some $50 in money. The local authorities did their best, but succeeded in capturing and convicting but one of the gang, who has the chance of spending almost ten years in the Eastern Penitentiary, where he will have an opportunity to ponder over his wickedness. The shock and cruel treatment, received at this time, which stirred the indignation of the neighborhood, still are felt by Mr. and Mrs. Darr.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company. 

View additional Cumberland County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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