Farris Family History
The family of Young Y. Farris and Mary Polly Dunbar
In late April, 1860, a number of individuals and families; including Young
Y. Farris, his wife and eight of his ten children, left Clarinda, Page County,
Iowa, presumably by wagon train, headed for Colorado. Their departure was
chronicled in two newspaper articles....
From the Clarinda (Iowa) Herald, April 27, 1860
"Gone to Pike's Peak"
A number of our citizens have started to Pike's Peak, and more
of them are preparing to go. Among those who started this week,
were the following gentlemen: Lewis Neff, three sons of Andrew
Morrow, Lewis Fritz, David C. Ribble, Newton Ridenour, B. Hinds,
Chas. Hinman, jr., A. S. Reed, Beecher McAlpin, Geo. Westheffer,
John Buckingham, Joshua Buckingham, James Hawley, ___Hammond,
Benj. Tanner, ___Murphy, Thomas B. Chamberlain, Henry Dorsey,
Young Farris and family, Wm. Scarlet and family, and Wm. Stockton
and family. These three families will go on to Oregon if they are
not suited in the Pike's Peak region. We hear that several are
prepairing to start from Amity, but are not posted as to who they
are or when they will start. We wish them all, individually and
collectively, a safe and speedy trip, and an abundance of the
"root of all evil."
From the Nebraska City Press, May 1, 1860
A Company from Clarinda, Page Co. Iowa consisting of Wm. Stockton,
Y. Farris, Wm. Scarlet, Mr. Fraley and their families arrived here
on Saturday on their way to Oregon. While they were encamped on
the opposite side of the river, a little boy, about three years
old, son of Mr. Scarlet, who had been ill previous to starting
grew worse and died. The bereaved parents deposited the body of
their little one in Wyuka Cemetery yesterday and this morning with
saddened hearts will pursue their way toward the setting sun."
Notes on the Farris Family
The three families noted in the newspaper articles above
included Young Farris, his wife Polly Dunbar, and all his
children with the exception of Elizabeth Farris Pace (who was
already married to Charles W. Pace, Sr. in Iowa) and Laura Farris
who was born later in Oregon. The William Stockton family were
William, his wife Nancy Ann Farris (daughter of Young Farris) and
their daughter Mary. Wm. Scarlett was an inlaw of the Pace family.
The party evidently decided quickly not to stay in Colorado, as
they were not found in the census for either Colorado or Oregon in
1860 (taken from June to August of that year), so they were
presumably on their way to Oregon in the late summer of 1860.
They settled in southern Oregon (exact location as yet not found,
but somewhere around Medford). In 1863 the Farris family left
Oregon for California, and evidently spent some time in the gold
mines around the Auburn-Colfax area, as Young and several of his
sons are found in the Placer County voter rolls for 1866, but
eventually settled in Lower Lake, Lake County, California.
Young Farris was a farmer and rancher, and farmed 80 acres just
north of the town of Lower Lake. He and his wife Polly both died
in Lower Lake in 1886, and are buried in the Lower Lake Cemetery
along with other members of the family.
The Stockton family evidently stayed another year or so in Oregon
(Nancy Farris Stockton's son Charles was born in Oregon in 1864),
then went to Winnemucca, Nevada, and then to Boise, Idaho where
they remained the rest of their lives.
Our research on the descendants of Young and Polly Farris:
Elizabeth Farris married Charles W. Pace, Sr. in Orange County, Indiana,
and they eventually migrated to Colorado. Much is known about the
ancestry and decendants of Charles Pace, since the Pace families
are very active genealogically. There is a Pace Society of America
website and a Pace History website, both of which can be found in
the Links section of this website. Charles W. Pace Jr. was the
father of three girls, two of which married Newfarmer boys, establishing
the relationship of Farris-Pace-Newfarmer on this website.
Nathan married Ellen Donaldson in Live Oak, Sutter County, and had
nine children, including twin girls, a son who died in infancy,
and another daughter who died before age ten. Nathan and his family
later left Lower Lake and went to the Fresno-Lemoore, California area
where he was a rancher. Of his remaining five children:
- Mary E. Farris married Robert Fall and had three children; Acy,
Emmett, and Orrin whose descendants are known.
- Emma Jane Farris married Thomas James Welborn and had three
children; Marjorie, Philip, and Stella, whose descendants
- Young A. Farris, never married.
- William Charles Farris married Marjorie Towne - they had no children.
- Cleo Lorene Farris had three children, two by Paul Stewart and one by
Kenneth Pilkington, but died at about age 30. Her children have been
traced, but we are still looking for some of their descendants.
William stayed in Lower Lake where he married and had three
children; Fred, Mabel, and William B. After the death of his
wife in 1899, he and son Fred went to Trinity County where they
were gold miners for 20-30 years. Late in life, he moved to the
Santa Clara area. His descendants are mostly known.
John also went to the mines in Trinity County around 1900,
remained single and eventually took up farming in Woodland,
Yolo County, California.
James never married, and also mined in Trinity County and farmed
in Woodland where he engaged in joint ventures with John.
Samuel never married, moved to the Mt. Shasta area, then to
Happy Camp on the Klamath River. He was evidently estranged
from the rest of the family, as no one knew where he was in
1886 when his father and mother died. At the time of his
death in Happy Camp, his obit said he had no known relatives.
Joseph married in Lower Lake and had one son and one daughter,
neither of which had children. He stayed in Lower Lake until
about the time his wife died in 1890 (there are conflicting
reports on whether she died in Lake County or Fresno County),
when he went to live in Los Angeles. We have recently located
the adopted daughter of Joseph's daughter, and may soon have more
to report on Joseph.
Sarah E. Farris married William Clayton in Lower Lake, then moved to
San Francisco and Oakland. William died only five years after their
marriage, cause unknown. He was 35 years old. She had two daughters,
A. Edna Clayton who married James B. Orr, and Winnifred who did not
marry. We are currently tracking down the Orr relatives.
Laura married Lionel Mitchell in Lower Lake where he was a
farmer, then went to the Marysville area where he was a fruit
dealer. They had four daughters, whose descendants we are still
Regarding the Farris surname:
Of Young Farris' six sons, three, John, James, and Samuel never
married. Of Nathan's three sons, one died in infancy, one never
married, and one married but had no children. Joseph had two
children, a son and a daughter, but son Carl never married.
So, the possible remains of the Farris surname lay at the hands
of William Wilson Farris.
William W. Farris had two sons, Fred Ogden Farris and William
Burns Farris. Fred had one son, Francis O. Farris, who died
in 1970, leaving two sons, Thomas and Neil. Thomas
and Neil have recently been located in the San Jose area.
William B. died in 1969 in Cotati, also leaving two sons,
Earl and George. Earl's daughter Susan has just been located
and will share information on her family as soon as she finishes