|Birth: ||Feb. 9, 1874|
|Death: ||Dec. 29, 1946|
BY Kathleen L. Endres: Mary Orr Barber, second wife of Ohio Columbus Barber, the match king of Akron. Little is known of Mary Orr's early education. In 1903, O.C. Barber, owner of the Diamond Match Co., hired 26-year-old Mary Orr as his private secretary in charge of the Akron, Ohio, office. On Dec. 2, 1915, they were married. He was 74 and she was 41. By all accounts, however, the marriage worked out well; the new bride knew every phase of the Barber business dealings and a prenuptial contract (Orr insisted on it) assured the new bride of future financial security, $25,000 a year for life. In any case, after the wedding, Barber took her place in Akron and Barberton society. She was a member of the Portage Country Club and the Akron Garden Club. She was especially involved in the Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA), serving as chair of the newly organized committee for young business girls and as a member of the board of directors when the association was planning and building its new headquarters on South High Street in Akron. After her husband's death in 1920, she moved to the Applebrook Farm, a large fruit farm/estate in Ghent. She needed to know the newest farming techniques so she went to Cornell University to find out how to grow and sell apples successfully. She also got involved with the Grange. By the late 1930s, Barber was diversifying her farm's production. Although fruit remained the primary business, she also began manufacturing sausage at the farm. In 1932, she ran unsuccessfully on an anti-prohibition platform for the state legislature. Throughout the 1930s, she remained active in civic organizations, serving on the board of Children's Hospital. Barber died on her Applebrook farm in December 1946. She had been ill for a year.
Mary was the daughter of Robert Wilbur and Minerva Adelaide (Potter) Orr.
Robert Wilbur Orr (1838 - 1918)
Ohio Columbus Barber (1841 - 1920)
Plot: Sec. 22, Barber family plot
Created by: Mr. Ed
Record added: Mar 30, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7310031