Abraham Garst's Family
By Dwayne Wrightsman
Abraham Garst, born March 4, 1770, is said to have married Mary Zehring in Pennsylvania, in 1790. The couple moved to Virginia and had three children. The mother, Mary Zehring Garst, died in Botetourt County at an early age. Abraham then married Katherine Ribble, March 17, 1801. The marriage is said to have taken place in the Tinker Creek-Glade Creek-Great Lick Community in Botetourt County. Eight or nine more children were born by this marriage.
According to Abraham Garst's son, Henry Clay Garst, his father sold the family farm in Botetourt County in 1835, and moved west, first stopping in Clark County, Ohio, and then moving to St. Joseph County, Indiana, settling in South Bend. Abraham Garst died in Indiana in the fall of 1838, and Katherine Ribble Garst died there in the spring of 1841. They were buried side by side in "Bowman's Graveyard," two miles east of South Bend, Indiana.
Abraham Garst did not leave a will. Following his death, the St. Joseph County Court notified the heirs to his estate as follows:
"Katherine Ribble Garst, wife, So. Bend, Ind.
Magdalena G. Brubaker, Salem, Va.
Barbara G. Stoner, Ladoga, In.
John and Abraham Garst Jr., New Carlisle, Ohio
George Garst, Muncytown, Indiana
Michael Garst, Dayton, Ohio
Daniel Garst, Dayton, Ohio
Joel, Hannah, and Henry Garst, all of St. Joseph County, Indiana
J.W. Bray, Clerk of Court
St. Joseph County, Indiana"
One name missing from the heirs listed above is that of Elias Garst, oldest son who was living in St. Joseph County at the time of his parents' deaths. Since the above list was taken from the Garst book, the compiler probably made an error of omission. In any event, on November 23, 1841, Elias Garst was appointed administrator of his father's estate. Given the date of the appointment, one can surmise that he took over the job shortly after the death of his mother, Katherine Ribble Garst.
Draft of Nov. 1, 2004, revised Dec. 6, 2005 (© 2006) Dwayne Wrightsman, used by permission.