George William Parr

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Valerie & Tommy Crook
September 24, 1999

The History of West Virginia, Old and New
Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc.,
Chicago and New York, Volume III,
pg. 263
Doddridge County

GEORGE WILLIAM PARR, who began the practice of law
in West Union more than forty years ago, has served the
profession with all his abilities and character, has earned
those things that constitute success, and among other
honors was for some time judge of the circuit including
Doddridge County.

Judge Parr was born on a farm in Fayette County,
West Virginia, December 18, 1857; son of Wesley J. and
Elizabeth (McCue) Parr. His father was born February
6, 1824, in Vermont, son of Artemus and Chloe Farr.
Artemus Farr was born and reared on the south coast of
Wales, and on coming to America settled in Vermont.
He was accompanied by three brothers to this country.
Wesley J. Farr was thirteen years of age when his father
died in 1837, and he was soon bound out to a New York
man, but on account of cruel treatment ran away and
walked to New York City and from there traveled by
steamboat to Richmond, Virginia. In Virginia he sought
work, and was variously employed for several years and
in the meantime added to his education by private study.
He finally moved to what is now Pocahontas County, West
Virginia, and a few years later to Nicholas County, where
he met and married Elizabeth McCue. She was born in
Nicholas County, daughter of John and Malinda (Mc-
Clung) McCue, natives of Nicholas County, where they
spent their lives. After his marriage Wesley Farr re-
mained in Nicholas County farming until 1856, and then
established his home on another farm in Fayette County,
where he lived until his death, on May 29, 1900. His wife,
Elizabeth, died in 1866, the mother of five children, two of
whom died in infancy. The other three were: Chloe M.,
Mrs. Charles Judy, of Lansing, West Virginia; George
W.; and James C., of Fayetteville. For his second wife
Wesley Farr married Mary E. Legg, who was born and
reared in Fayette County, and is still living. She became
the mother of nine children, named Ellen, Leonard, Grant,
Rosa, Walter, Arthur, Susan, John and Lud.

Wesley Farr was a member of the Methodist Episcopal
Church, was a man of intellectual power and force of
character, and in spite of the fact that he was largely
self educated he was regarded as one of the best informed
men in his county. He held several positions of honor and
trust, being a member of the County Court and justice of
the peace. He was a strong Union man in the Civil war.
In politics he was a democrat up to the war, but ever
after was a republican.

Judge George W. Parr attended rural schools, and after
exhausting these advantages he became in turn a teacher
and taught for six terms. In the meantime he was study-
ing law, and in April, 1881, he wag admitted to the bar
and on the twenty-fifth of the same month he established
his office at West Union. During all the busy years of a
professional career he has looked after an extensive private
practice, has served as county prosecuting attorney, as
mayor of West Union, for eight years was a state senator,
and resigned that office to become judge of the Circuit
Court by appointment from Governor Atkinson to fill a
vacancy. He was on the bench for twenty months, and
then resumed private practice. Judge Farr has farm in-
terests and has prospered in his business affairs as well
as in his profession. He is a republican and a member of
the Methodist Church.

On April 15, 1886, Judge Farr married Miss Agnes V.
Stuart. Her father, Chapman J. Stuart, one of the able
lawyers and prominent citizens of West Virginia, was born
in Highland County, Virginia, January 8, 1820, and died
at West Union, April 20, 1888, a son of Edward and
Margaret A. Stuart, who removed to Harrison County,
West Virginia, in 1822. The first wife of Chapman 3.
Stuart was Elizabeth E. Little, a native of Bedford
County, Pennsylvania, who died in 1855. In 1858 he
married Mary A. Stuart, who was born in Bath County,
Virginia. Chapman J. Stuart served as county prosecutor
from 1852 to 1861. He was an opponent of secession, and
sat as a member of the First Wheeling Convention of
1861, was a member of the Constitutional Convention of
1862, and in 1863 was elected judge of the Circuit Court
and was on the bench for ten years, until 1873. His public
service to the state continued after leaving the bench, and
in 1874-75 and again in 1878-79 he represented Doddridge
County in the Legislature. During the Civil war he did
some valuable work as a lieutenant of the Fourteenth West
Virginia Infantry in recruiting Union soldiers, raising
Company A of that regiment. He was a democrat and a
member of the Methodist Church.

Judge and Mrs. Farr have two children: Mary and
Ruby T. Mary is the deceased wife of Ed. Maxwell, and
her only child, Mary Agnes, is now being reared in the
home of her grandparents, Judge and Mrs. Farr. Ruby is
the wife of Everet W. Maxwell.