: William was the 2nd born child to Susannah Lee and Samuel Kimbrough Barlow. His siblings: Sarah, born 1821; James K., born 1826; John Lawson, born 1828; Elizabeth Jane, born 1832; all born in Marion Co Indiana.
His family were pioneers of 1845 taking the Oregon Trail to The Dalles, Oregon and trailblazing what came to be known as The Barlow Road over Mt. Hood to Oregon City, arriving in December of that year. William and his brothers, ages 17-23, would have been a great help to their father Samuel in finding a way overland to avoid taking a raft up the Columbia River from The Dalles.
William would purchase his father's DLC in Clackamas Co where today the City of Barlow is located, then known as the lower Molalla. When his mother, Susannah, died in 1852, Samuel donated land for the Barlow Pioneer Cemetery for her burial. William's brother James K. was buried there in 1866 and Samuel K. himself in 1867.
William married first to Rachel Larkins, sister to Rebecca who married William's brother James. Following Rachel's death, he married Martha Ann Partlow who had been widowed 2 times. She brought several children to their marriage and they had 3 more: Mary Susannah born 1853, Virginia Ann born 1856, Cassius Union born 1858. Sadly, Virginia died at 10 yrs. of age.
William and Martha Ann platted the city of Barlow in 1891 which became an incorporated city in February 1903. He built a lovely Italianette style home for his wife & large family who came and went from that large residence until his death. His daughter Mary Susannah inherited the house and land before she married, but sold it out of the family in 1906. William bought and sold many parcels of land in and around Clackamas Co before his death in 1904. At one time between he and his two brothers their land holdings totaled nearly 2000 acres.
: Martha Ann Partlow had a twin sister, Mary Elizabeth Partlow, being born in the state of Virginia. Martha was first married in 1842 to William Tull in Carrol Co Missouri. She had a son, William Samuel Tull by this William #1 [she was to marry 3 times and each time to a William]. Following the death of Mr. Tull in 1844 she was wed to William Richardson Allen, a physician, in 1846. He brought 3 children to this marriage and Martha Ann brought her only son. Together she & William #2 had 3 more children. They left Missouri in 1850 heading west on the Oregon Trail. Along the Trail Dr. Allen is credited with having saved 700 victims of cholera. Upon their arrival in Oregon Territory they located in Clackamas Co a brief time before his death.
Martha Ann married William Barlow in 1852 bringing several children to this union; together they had 3 more: Mary Susannah, born 1853, Virginia Ann, born 1856, and Cassius Union, born 1858.
For most of their married life they lived in a beautiful Italianette style home William built near the city limits of Barlow, Oregon in Clackamas Co. This home has been lovingly preserved by a former owner, Virginia Miller. The house is included on The National Register of Historic Places and is a private residence today, located on Hwy 99E.
A memorial fountain was a gift to the City of Barlow by their daughter Mary S. Barlow following her father's death in 1904, her mother having died in 1901. Barlow Fountain by Sue Barnett at Find-a-Grave.com
Click to enlarge >>>
History of the First Bushel of American
Black Walnuts ever brought to Oregon
I came to Oregon in 1845 and supposed we
would find similar nut-bearing trees to those found all over
the Atlantic and Middle West States. But when I arrived here,
I found there was no nut-bearing trees of any kind, except
some small hazel nuts, which were of a very different kind
from those which grew wild in Indiana.
So I made up my mind that I would send back,
the first good opportunity, and have a bushel of black and
white walnuts sent out.
In 1858, Mr. John Dement, a good friend
of mine, was going back by way of the Isthmus and he said
he would send me a bushel by Adams Express. But remarked
that it would cost considerable.
I said "Never mind the cost. I want
to get them here by Winter, so I can prepare them for planting
the next Spring."
He did just as I told him but had to pay
in advance to San Francisco for expressage. But he had plenty
of money of his own, beside he had some Indian war claims
to collect for me.
These he did not collect till later on.
However, he hurried the walnuts on, so I would get them in
time for Fall planting. They were forwarded to me at Oregon
City and when all the charges came in, I was out just sixty-five
dollars. I went down to town, brought the sack up and told
my wife what they cost.
She said, "Well, I declare, I could
have got that many walnuts in Missouri for fifty cents."
I said, "Well, we will crack a few
of them anyway to see if they are good. If they grow, I will
get my money back and several hundred percent."
She said, "One is enough to tell that
and one is enough to lose."
"No," I said, "We will have
They were both good and brought old Missouri
and Illinois and Indiana right home to us.
So I made a box, put sand and dirt in it,
planted the nuts in the box and buried them all in the ground.
I kept them moist, all Winter and by Spring, they were all
beginning to open. I then prepared the ground in fine shape
and planted the nuts in rows.
There were 765 nuts of both kinds, but there
were not over 100 butternuts out of that number. About 760
came up and such a growth I never saw before. I kept the
ground well watered and well worked and the roots were larger
and longer than the tops. A large portion of the roots went
down three feet deep. Later in the Fall, I took them all
up, set out about 100, gave away a great many to my particular
friends and put the balance on the market at $1.50 each.
I allowed a big commission to the nursery man who handled
them, and the whole venture left me a net profit of $500.00.
Besides I had my walnut avenues, 400 feet long with a row
of walnuts on each side. There is one tree that is over three
and one half feet in diameter six feet from the ground, and
its branches spread out 80 feet in diameter or 240 feet in
From the WPA Life Histories ....
Written by a third generation descendant of Samuel Kimbrough Barlow
Now, as to that avenue of great walnut
trees that runs from the front gate to the entrance of the
big house up at Barlow Station. That was planted by my grandfather,
William Barlow, following the erection of his first house,
which was built in the style of an old southern plantation
mansion. Southern Colonial houses I think they were called.
It had sixteen or eighteen rooms, a low sloping roof, and
a wide, double gallery, with large pillars, in the true southern
manner, I can remember it faintly. The grounds were beautiful
in my recollection with a fountain in front of the entrance,
and flower beds stretching in every direction, set off by
brick parterres. Grandfather had the pleasant habit of presenting
grandmother with a handsome present every time she presented
him with a new son or daughter. Aunt Mollie, if I am correct,
was the cause for a very grand new carriage. Back in my memory
are the highlights of one Christmas in that lovely old home,
of bells and horses, candles and a huge Christmas tree that
we children peeked at through always-closing doors and all
the excitement attending a big house full of people, big
and little. And no little glamour was added to all this by
the presence of the two darkies grandmother had brought with
her from the south--old Rose and Peter, who stayed with her
to the end. I was always horror stricken at the sight of
mother kissing Ol' Rose, who had nursed her from babyhood,
but whose black skin was too alien to me for such affectionate
This southern house was burned in '82 or
'83, after which the house which still stands was built.
With the exception of the big front verandah, added a few
years ago, it looks very much as it did originally. But it
was when the first house was talked about that grandmother,
having in mind the magnolia and other avenues of the southern
plantations, insisted that there should be an avenue to her
house in Oregon, and grandfather said, all right, as soon
as someone went east that he could entrust with the mission,
he would send for the seeds. Grandfather's only stipulation
was that the trees of the avenue should be walnut-black walnuts
from his native State of Indiana. You see he had his memories
too. Finally the seed nuts were sent for -- to Bridgeport,
Indiana, where the nut trees grew wild. A Mr. Dement was
going to Washington, D.C., and the plan was to send the nuts
to him there, but for some reason he did not return to Oregon,
and it resulted in the nuts being entrusted to Senator Thurston.
Senator Thurston, you will remember, died at Acapulco, Panama,
on his way back home in 1851. He actually died at sea, where
the superstitious sailors wanted to bury him, but the ship
put in to port, and he was buried ashore.
Two years later Oregon Territory ...... For the rest of
the story ..... go to:
Go to "search all collections" and
key in Barlow, then search for full stories.
This one is called .... "Of
Walnuts and Earrings"
The Historic William Barlow House
Wikipedia: William Barlow House (or Barlow House) is a historic building in Clackamas County, Oregon, United States. Barlow House was home to William Barlow, namesake of the city of Barlow and son of Samuel K. Barlow, who built the Barlow Road. The house is located south of Barlow, between Canby and Aurora on 99E. It was built in an Italianate style in 1885, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places on February 15, 1977. It now operates as a privately owned museum and is open by appointment
November 2011: I received a message and photos from Sue Barnett in Oregon concerning the walnut trees at the Barlow House in Clackamas Co Oregon:
The walnut trees planted by William Barlow c1858 are no more.
Barlow House ~~ Black Walnut Trees ~~ current status:
My husband today talked with the current owner so I will try to convey exactly what information she gave him. They have known of the trees being invested with a disease for the last 4 years and have been working over that time period to research the best sources in order to make an educated decision as to what action must be taken.
The gut of this story is that a disease has been successful in eating its way up from the root structure to the very top of these trees... ALL OF THE BLACK WALNUT TREES on Barlow House property must be removed. This disease is unnamed as yet, but comes from a virus that has attached itself to a particular beetle, white in color...this disease does not kill the beetles which makes it so devastating because the beetles continue to eat their way thru these trees, carrying the deadly virus. Tree specialists have been brought out to the site and have given injections of various chemicals to each tree, hoping to kill the virus but nothing has worked yet to halt the disease or beetle; it is not known why they are so resistant to treatment. It is killing mostly Black Walnut trees in many locations, and some other walnut tree varieties also; it may affect other trees, not know as yet. Scientists to date have no answer as to the reason the virus cannot be killed or why this particular beetle carries it without dying.
This disease and the beetles have become the center of a current study by several sources, especially at the Univ of Colorado at Boulder. The owners of the trees at Barlow House cannot keep any of this diseased wood because of the unknown factors involved. All of the large pieces that have fallen are going directly to the Univ at Boulder, CO for specific study in hopes to gain more success in dealing with this dreadful tree disease.
The owners of the Barlow House have been tormented, literally, by well-meaning people who demand just what they are doing in removing these Landmark Walnut Trees from the property. Actually their own emotions are in shreds from the necessity of taking this action and over the past 4 years they have hoped to find a way to save some of their beloved trees, but they must all come down. The trees are dangerous and very brittle at this point in time and could fall causing bodily harm to anyone at anytime. My husband watched today as a large, tall tree trunk, shaved of its limbs, was felled...it truly shattered when it hit the ground, it was so fragile.
We all know they are part of the history of the William and Martha Ann Barlow family. The one redeeming factor and hope of the current owners is that finding a cure for this virus will cause history to be changed for the best in the future life of these endangered trees, saving other beautiful, historic places from the fate of the Barlow House Black Walnut Trees.
Click on images to view full size:
What has came down in our family as the "Earring
Story", should probably be called a Twin Story. My grandmother,
whose maiden name in full was Martha Ann Partlow, had a twin
sister, Mary. They were born in Virginia, and they were so
exactly alike that, for identification purposes great-grandmother
put earrings of a different design on them at a very early
age. Here, tied in the scrapbook, is one of the earrings that
grandmother wore from the time she became a young lady.
It is one of the earrings too, that took part
in the incident I am relating. You see, she had this pair on
in this daguerreotype. Eventually great-aunt Mary married a
Colonel White, and moved with her husband to Fort Worth, Texas,
after which, it is said, grandmother pined and grew so puny
that great-aunt Mary sent for her to join her in her new home.
Now, this isn't a part of the story, but, in case you are ever
bitten by a Black Widow spider, you may find it interesting.
Grandmother had barely reached Fort Worth when she was bitten
by a spider, and she swelled and suffered so they despaired
of her life. Then the niggers took her in hand; they buried
her in mud up to her neck, and it cured her, or at least she
recovered. While grandmother was at Fort Worth she met and
married a young lieutenant, named Tull. They were transferred
to Missouri, where they heard much about, and became interested
in Oregon, but within seven months grandmother's husband died,
and her first child was born fatherless. Sometime later she
met a Doctor William Allen, from Kentucky. He was a widower,
with three young children. He, too, it seems, wanted to come
to Oregon, and eventually they arrived here, but it appears
nobody was sick in the Oregon country, and, to make a living,
he turned to teaching dancing. Then, very suddenly, he died
from a heart attack. Grandmother had two children by him, so
his death left her practically penniless with six children
to support. There was one thing grandmother knew about, and
that was good food. I forgot to mention that two of the old
family darkies, Peter and Ol' Rose, had joined her. So they
were on her hands too.
Canemah, at that time, was a point where all
the Willamette River boats discharged both supplies and passengers.
It was a fairly lively little place, and here my grandmother,
with the help of her two darkies, put on big suppers for dances
and other gala affairs. Meantime grandmother's twin, great-aunt
Mary and her husband had come to Oregon. Great-aunt Mary was
much concerned about her twin.
While grandmother was doing very well for
herself, her six children and her two darkies, great-aunt Mary
looked on the enterprise with little favor. Grandmother was
still a young and comely woman and great-aunt Mary thought
she should be picking out a husband from the many prosperous
and otherwise eligible men about. Among these was a young man
by the name of William Barlow. Great-aunt Mary selected him
as her future brother-in-law. He was not only personable, but
he was a money-maker. He owned a lot of land, for all of which
he paid cash; never, strange as it may seem, filing on government
land. But grandmother was shy, despite the fact that she was
twice a widow, and no widow is supposed to be bashful. Nevertheless,
grandmother was unequal to the plan suggested by her twin;
she declared she couldn't "make up" to any man, and
that was that. Great-aunt Mary went into action. There was
to be a big dance at Canemah one night, and grandmother was
going to give the usual supper. She had been in Oregon City
where great-aunt Mary lived. William Barlow, it was learned,
was going to Canemah also. This was a Providence-sent opportunity,
in great-aunt Mary's opinion. If grandmother wouldn't make
the best of it, she would. She prevailed on grandmother to
exchange earrings with her, and off she went on the same boat
with the handsome young farmer. She contrived an introduction,
and flirted with him to such effect that she won his interest
and affection on the spot -- a combination that she shortly
turned over, with a second exchange of earrings, to the widowed
sister and her six orphans. And all of them, with the children
that came along later, lived happily ever after.