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Use caution, this site contains many unproven facts and speculation and errors are almost a certainty, Use this information as clues to guide your own research and always independently verify the facts stated. Where possible we have included images of records so researchers can reach their own conclusions.

Family History


The Garner surname originates in France as as Garneau and Garnier. Before it ever became a surname, Garnerius was a popular personal name during the 11th Century. The old French word of "Germer" meant a storehouse for corn or grain" and the name was given to a man who worked at, or perhaps the keeper of the grainery. The latin "granum" means "seed". The surname came to England from France at the time of the Conquest and is found written originally as Gerner. Geogrey Gerner is recorded on Tax Rolls of Essex in 1272. William del Gerner lived in Lancashire, England in 1332.

The very first record of the family name Garner was found in East Prussia, which is located in Germany and Poland. The Garner family traces their ancestral roots back to Prussian origin before the year 1100. From here they branched and migrated, gaining prosperity as a notable family of Germany and Poland.


 (last update 27 Aug 2004)

First Generation

ABNER GARNER [792] was born about 1791 in North Carolina, and died 1861. Before 1812 he migrated to Knox County, Tennessee. He was a military man at heart. He certainly lived up to his namesake, the bible's King Saul's cousin and commander of his army.  In 1812 he enlisted in the Western Tennessee Militia and served in Captain John Stephens' Company of Colonel Ware's Regiment during the War of 1812. He enlisted in Knoxville, Tennessee in October or November of 1812. He received an honorable discharge upon furlough for illness in early 1813. He enlisted again, this time in Samuel Thompson's Company of Colonel Baly's Regiment, in October or November of 1814 at Maryville, Tennessee for a six-month term substituting for Andy Vaught.  He was discharged at Maryville in April or May of 1815.

After the war, he married (1) MARGARET HARDIN on 27 Oct 1815 in Knox County, Tennessee, daughter of JAMES HARDIN and NELLIE GOODIN. She was born about 1795, and died between 1825 and 1830. It is believed that they lived in Blount County, Tennessee until about 1825 when they moved to McNairy County, Tennessee. Between 1825 and 1830 Margaret passed away and Abner remarried (2) REBECCA [last name unknown] about 1830. She was born between 1810 and 1820, and died before 1854. Because of the uncertainty of Margaret's date of death and the date Abner married Rebecca, it is not clear whether the second male child and Moses were Margaret's or Rebecca's son. 

Before 1836 the family moved to Tishomingo County, Mississippi, being one of the first permanent residents of that part of the county. Abner was appointed to a committee to select the site for a road leading from the new county seat west to connect to the road from Ripley to Memphis. On 25 July 1844, Abner was appointed Constable of Tishomingo County. While living in Tishomingo County it split into Alcorn, Prentiss and Tishomingo Counties. Abner bought 160 acres of land federal land in Alcord County, Mississippi. In 1850 Abner and Rebecca sold their land in Mississippi and migrated to Dallas County, Arkansas. It is believed that they were accompanied on this journey by the Morris family. Three of the Morris children subsequently married into the Garner family. 

On 17 June 1853 Abner applied for a bounty land warrant for 40 acres in Dallas County, Arkansas for his service in the War of 1812. On 6 July 1853 the warrant was granted. Shortly thereafter Rebecca passed away.

After Rebecca' s death Abner remarried (3) SARAH BOX on 31 Jan 1854 in Hot Springs County, Arkansas. She was born about 1796 in North Carolina, and died Unknown and was the widow of John Box. 

On 12 September 1857 Abner applied for an additional bounty land warrant under the act of 1855. In his affidavit he stated that his previous warrant for 40 acres had been legally disposed of. This warrant was granted on 10 March  1858. 

In June 1861, one month after his son Abner Abernathy Garner went to Memphis and enlisted in the CSA Army,  Abner took his son Moses into Pine Bluff to enlist him in the 2nd Arkansas Infantry Battalion, CSA. Apparently, Abner boasted of his military exploits and allowed himself to be talked into enlisting himself. So, Abner fought in the Civil War at the age of 67. The 2nd Infantry Battalion was assigned to picket duty on the Potomac River near Fredericksburg, Virginia. During the hard winter of 1861/62 most of the soldiers became very ill, including Abner. In December he received a medical discharge and died shortly after arriving back home in Arkansas.

His grave marker in Davis Cemetery, Grant County, Arkansas, indicates that he died in 1861. Some researchers suspect that he died in 1862. He was discharged from the CSA Army on 25 December 1861. His discharge certificate indicates that it was given in duplicate in Richmond Virginia on 1 January 1862. If Abner was in Richmond when discharged he could not have returned home in 1861. He was paid 10 cents per mile for return travel and the total came to $16.10. This would indicate that his return travel was 161 miles. It is that the paper work was administratively filed with the Quartermaster in Richmond in 1862 but Abner did indeed die in 1861. 

Children of ABNER GARNER and MARGARET HARDIN are:

  1. [first name unknown] GARNER, b. about 1820.

  2. [first name unknown] GARNER, b. about 1825

  3. MOSES EDWARD GARNER, b. 16 April 1830 Tennessee; d. Oct 1872.

Children of ABNER and REBECCA GARNER are:

  1. [first name unknown] GARNER, b. between 1831 and 1837.

  2. [first name unknown] GARNER, b. between 1835 and 1837.

  3. ABNER ABERNATHY GARNER, b. May 1832, Mississippi; d. between 1903 and 1908, Grant County, Arkansas.

  4. DOLLY GARNER, b. about 1841; d. about 1875, Grant County, Arkansas.

  5. GEORGIA ADALINE GARNER, b. 04 Jul 1843, Holly Springs, Marshall County, Mississippi; d. 10 Dec 1932, Lonoke County, Arkansas; m. JAMES MADISON MORRIS, 7 Jun 1866, Jefferson County, Arkansas.

  6. PARALEE GARNER, b. about 1848, Mississippi; d. 28 Aug 1924; married FRANK L. LOWRY.

Bibliography

  • 1815 Knox County, Tennessee Marriage Record (Abner and Margaret).

  • 1816 Court Records, Blount County, Tennessee.

  • 1818 Deed Book, Blount County, Tennessee, Book 2, Pages 55-56.

  • 1830 Federal Census, TN, McNairy County, page 134a.

  • 1832 State Census, McNairy County, Tennessee

  • 1836 Tishomingo County, Mississippi Police Court Record, Page 27, Aug. Term 1836

  • 1840 Federal Census, Tishomingo County, Mississippi

  • 1841 State Census, Tishomingo County, Mississippi

  • 1843 Federal Land Records, Alcorn County, Mississippi

  • 1845 Territorial and State Census, Tishomingo County, Mississippi

  • 1854 Marriage Records, Hot Spring County, Arkansas (Abner to Sarah Box)

  • 1860 Federal Land Records, Grant County, Arkansas

  • 1860 Federal Census, AR, Jefferson County, White Oak Township, page 864, Abner Garner.

  • 1861: Military Disability Certificate, Abner Garner. click to view image

  • National Park Service, Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System, "Electronic."

  • Grave Markers, Davis Cemetery, Grant County, Arkansas. click to view image

Research Notes. The mother of son Moses is in question. He was born close to the time Abner's first wife died and he married his second wife. There was an Abner Garner in the 14th Regiment of the Alabama Militia. That regiment was subsequently court-martialed in 1821 in Blount County, Alabama and this Abner Garber was fined $2.00. We have been unable to determine the reason for the court-martial or if this is the same Abner.  


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