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 Abner Mark

Abner Mark

Ross County, Ohio, USA
Death 25 Jan 1898 (aged 87)
Mercer County, Missouri, USA
Burial Adel, Mercer County, Missouri, USA
Memorial ID 37045394 · View Source
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Buried in Freedom Cemetery, Mercer County, MO.

When Abner and Catherine started west, they needed a tent so all the family had a place to sleep; the covered wagon was far from big enough. Aaron was nineteen, Eliza was seventeen, Marion was fifteen, Ezra was thirteen, Benjamin was eleven, Sinia was seven, Lathan was four and Anthony was twenty months.

Benjamin remembered the route they took to Iowa. It took them within sight of Kankakee, IL. They crossed the Mississippi River at Clinton, Iowa on a horse-drawn ferry and passed through Iowa City, then the capitol of Iowa.

Abner remained in Marion County, Iowa, until the next October when he located permanently one and one-half miles east of Pleasanton, Iowa. In Marion County, all the good timber land was taken so as his crops were in, Abner started out to see what was available. First he went to Decatur City where Catherine's brother Rueben Burnett was, and from there he went south of Pleasanton where his cousin John Mark was now living. Adjoining cousin John's land on the east and up against the Iowa-MO border line, Abner found a piece of land that suited him. Accordingly, he went to the government land office at Plattsburg in Clinton County, MO, and entered 152 acres of this land, paying $1.25 an acre for it. Next year he had Cyrus Burnett (his wife's brother) enter forty more acres for him. In order to get the railroad to come through Pleasanton, Abner donated this forty acres to the railroad in 1882 as his contribution to the "Old Narrow Gage" railroad.

Before moving, Abner came down from Marion County bringing with him Marion and Eliza Ann and built a house. This house was built near where the present (1941) barn stood. It was two log cabins, each about eighteen feet by sixteen feet, placed eight fet apart and connected by an enclosed passageway. The west room was the living room and the east room was the kitchen. Later the roof of the west room was raised for an upstairs. Still later, about 1866, a frame kitchen was built on the north of the living room. Around 1872, Abner, with the help of his two sons Anthony and Benjamin, built a new frame house. Anthony took over the farm and built two rooms on the east part of the main house. Abner and Catherine decided a few months later they would rather live in the two new rooms. In the autumn of 1882 Abner and Catherine went back to Ohio for a visit. They had been married at this time for sixty-four years.

In apearance, Abner Mark was a square, stock-built man; not unlike the pictures of Jolland Dutchmen. He wore good roomy tailored jeans, pants coat and vest, a colored shirt, brown home-knit socks and a William Penn hat. In old age he walked with a cane. He had reddish-brown or sandy colored hair which never became more than streaked with grey. The reddish hair is supposed to have been a heritage from his French ancestors. His eyes were blue. In the prime of his life Abner was probably 5 feet 10 inches and may at one time weighted 180 pounds. He was a man of convictions, firm and sometimes quite set in his ways. He believed firmly in the signs of the moon and wasn't afraid to say so in spite of the ridicule of his sons, none of whom cared in the least what the signs were as to when they planted potatoes, sheared sheep or did their butchering. Catherine, also, believed in the signs of the moon.

Abner liked to read and kept informed on events of the day. In Ohio the newspaper in the house was "The Cincinnati Dollar Weekly Times." In the west this was superseded by "The Chicago Weekly Inter-Ocean." Abner was not a talkative person, although he talked considerable with Catherine, but not a great deal with the children when they were young. He had a friendly and sociable disposition and he never scolded in his family, nor seldom whipped the children. But if he spoke warningly to the child, that child was expected to obey. There was only once that a child was remembered to have sassed him. That was Sinia who refused to do as she was told. Sinia received a spanking. Lathan was once spanked severely, but the reason is unknown.

While his children were growing up, Abner made a barrel of sauerkraut each autumn. His part in this was to wash and scour his feet very clean, climb into the barrel and tramp down the kraut while the rest cut and emptied in the cabbage. He said his feet were as clean for the work as a woman's hands for making bread.

When Abner was about fifty years old he lost the sight of one eye due to a whitish growth over the eyeball. The growth, which caused him much pain, was removed but the sight had been destroyed. For many years he was considerably deaf so that towards the last conversation with him became veery difficult. During the last years his mind would wander, also. He was able to get around the house with his cane until this final sickness. He was sick for only two weeks, and he died at age 88.




  • Maintained by: Smilydino
  • Originally Created by: Sakeeta
  • Added: 13 May 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 37045394
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Abner Mark (21 Jun 1810–25 Jan 1898), Find A Grave Memorial no. 37045394, citing Freedom Cemetery, Adel, Mercer County, Missouri, USA ; Maintained by Smilydino (contributor 47098476) .