JOHN L. SPEAR has been a resident of California since 1853. He was born in Page County, Virginia, July 1, 1811,
son of Jacob and Polly (Hardberger) Spear, natives of Pennsylvania who removed to Virginia soon after their marriage.
There were nine children in the family, but as Mr. Spear lost trace of them during the civil war he does not know
how many are living.
He was reared in his native State and was there married to his first wife. She bore him a daughter, Sarah Ann,
who is now the wife of Edwin Davis. Mr. Spear removed to Missouri, and there his wife died in 1836. In 1844 he
wedded Mary R. Garvin, a native of Missouri, who is his present companion. To them six children were born, one
dying in infancy. Those living are as follows: Jacob, who is now with his father; Margret, wife of John Fox, a
resident of Los Angeles County; Frances Eliza, wife of R. C. Glass, of Bakersfield, Kern County; and Agnes, wife
of John Woolley, who resides at Exeter, this county. (See history of Mr. Woolley in this work.) Henry E. has a
ranch adjoining his father's. The family crossed the plains with ox teams to this State in 1853, coming on account
of Mrs. Spear's ill health. She began to recover as soon as they were well started on the journey. Arrived in California,
they first settled in Stanislans County, where they spent. two years. Mr. Spear then went to the mines and followed
the various fortunes of the miner from 1855 till 1861, losing all he had, and from there coming to Tulare County.
At first he settled on eighty acres of timber land, and afterward came to his present locality near Farmersville.
He and his sons have four hundred acres of land, the oldest son being single and residing with his father. Both
sons are intelligent, industrious and respected citizens.
Mr. Spear is now eighty years of age, and he and his wife have lived together forty five years. He was made a Master
Mason in 1852. In politics he was first a Whig, later a Democrat, and is now an earnest temperance worker and votes
with the Prohibitionists.
Memorial and Biographical History
of the counties of
Fresno, Tulare and Kern,
The Lewis Publishing Company
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