KANAWHA COUNTY WEST VIRGINIA - BIOS: JARRETT, Mark S.
Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 26, 1999
History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
MARK S. JARRETT, a well known citizen of Charleston, where he is engaged in
the real estate business, also holding the office of overseer of the poor,
comes of one of the old settled families of Greenbrier County, W. Va. He was
born on the old Jarrett homestead in Elk district, then in Virginia, March
25, i856, son of Eli and Nancy (Newhouse) Jarrett.
His paternal grandfather was Owen Jarrett, who was born in Greenbrier County,
where he married Elizabeth Vincent. After the birth of their first child Mr.
and Mrs. Owen Jarrett removed to Kanawha County, and settled at Jarrett's
Ford on Elk River, in 1812, and purchased land in Elk District-several
hundred acres, all of which was virgin land, which he retained possession of
until his death in the fifties. The ford in the river near his farm is still
kriown as Jarrett's Ford. His widow survived him many years, being ninety-six
years old at the time of her death. They were among the early supporters of
the Baptist church in Elk District and were people of social importance.
Their family consisted of six sons an4 three daughters, namely: Eli, a farmer
who lived and died at Jarrett's Ford, in Elk District; Squire Jarrett in Big
Sandy District; John, now his ninety-fourth year, who has always lived in Elk
Distnct, on Little Sandy; Rose
Ann, who married John Samples, she and her husband being both now deceased;
Vincent, a farmer who died in Big Sandy District; Nancy, who. is the widow of
Charles Osborn and resides in Big Sandy District; Owen, Jr., who owned a farm
at Jarrett's Ford and who died in 1910; and Sarah, who was the wife of
Benjamin Melton, a farmer in Elk District, both being now deceased.
Descendants of the above men-tioned family still reside in Elk and Big Sandy
Eli Jarrett was born in Greenbrier County in 1809 and was three years old
when his parents came to Kanawha County. The region was then practically a
wilderness. The forests were full of wild game and the streams of fish and
the land responded generously to the most primitive attempts at cultivation.
This great abundance of the necessities of life, for which there was then
practically no outside market, induced a generous scale of living and giving
that might be called typically Southern, though changed conditions have since
necessarily modified the method, though not the spirit of hospitality. It was
said of Mr. Eli Jarrett that he would never sell a neighbor one of his flock,
but would take pleasure in giving. it; his neighbors knew they had permission
to shoot game all over his estate, and he would frequently join them, as he
was a good marksman and was fond of hunting. He was a large hearted, generous
man, and possessed all the qualities of a good citizen. He succeeded to the
parental homestead, on which he resided until his death, which occurred May
11, 1897. He was a Democrat in politics but served in no public office.
Eli Jarrett was married in Elk District, to Nancy Newhouse, who was born
there in i8ii and who also died there, at the age of eighty-seven years, in
1899. Her people were early settlers in Elk Valley. Both Eli Jarrett and wife
were members and gener-ous supporters of the Baptist church. Eight sons and
three daughters were born to them, as follows: Columbus, who was a farmer in
Elk District, married Mary Slack,
both being now deceased; Harrison, who is also deceased, married Sarah
Matheny and reared his family in Elk District; Caroline, who is the wife of
Birdet Price, a farmer in Elk District; James, who married Nannie Darlington,
both being now deceased; Owen V., who followed farming in Elk District until
his death, and married Martha Cummins, both being now deceased; Elizabeth,
who is the widow of Marshall Depew, of Roane County, a farmer and stock
raiser who died in 1909, leaving an estate worth about $100,000; Catherine,
residing in Elk District, who is the widow of David Jarrett; Eli T., now
residing in Cabin Creek District, who married Matura Jarrett, now de-ceased,
their children being born in Ohio; John T., a lumberman living in Malden
Dis-trict, who married Betty Copenhaver; Squire B., who has been in the
livery busi-ness at Charleston for many years and who married Mary Vickers;
and Mark S., who is the youngest of the family.
Mark S. Jarrett remained with his parents and gave them filial care in their
old age. He subsequently became the owner of the parental homestead, where he
continued to reside and carry on the various farm indus-tries until 1895. He
then moved to Charleston, where he went into the hotel business and continued
in this line for twelve years, when he retired. A useful and prominent
citizen, he was elected a member of the City Council in 1902 and 1903, being
politically a Republican.
Mr. Jarrett was first married in 1881to Mary E. Legg, who died about 1887.
They had three children-Marshall E., who died at the age of eleven
years;-Grace, who is the wife of George Stoffel and resides in Charleston;
and Nannie, who is the wife of C. W. Richardson and is also a resident of
Charleston. Mr. Jarrett married secondly Cynthia E. Blackshire, by whom he
had one son, Sidney, who is now living in Charleston.
In 1895 Mr. Jarrett was married thirdly at Charleston to Miss Elizabeth
Stoffel, who was born in Beaver County, Pa., November 15, i86i, and who was
brought to Kanawha
County in 1868 and was reared in Elk District. Her parents, Stephen and Mary
(Panner) Stoffel, were natives of Germany, who were married in Pennsylvania
and died in Elk District, the former in 1887, aged seventy-seven years, and
the latter in i885, aged seventy-two years. Mr. and Mrs. Jar-rett have two
children: Catherine F., who was born September 9, 1898; and Ruth Irene, born
November 2, 1903. The family belong to the Bowman Methodist Episcopal church.
He has filled the office of overseer of the poor in Charleston District for
the last twelve years, it coming to him without any solicitation on his part,
and its accept-ance being prompted by his charitable disposition.
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