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Biography of William Elliott Barnhart

William Elliott Barnhart, who has lived in Kansas City, Kansas, since 1887, has held many large responsibilities in connection with transportation lines, both urban and general railway companies, and has also regulated his private affairs so as to give time for much public service to his home city. His personal career has been one of many interesting experiences and achievements and his ancestry is also an appropriate matter of record. Mr. Barnhart was born at Cedar Valley in Wayne County, Ohio, December 8, 1857, a son of Frederick William and Clarisas (Gooding) Barnhart. The paternal ancestry goes back to his great-grandfather Johann Wilhelm Bernhardt. From the German Palatinate, now including chiefly Baden and Rhenish Bavaria, this ancestor emigrated on May 12, 1764, and settled in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. A son of Johann Wilhelm was Philippe Bernhardt, who served as a soldier in the War of 1812. Philippe’s wife was Elizabeth Rice, whose father, Frederick Rice, was a gallant soldier of the War of the Revolution and when he died at Wooster, Ohio, in February, 1848, he was accorded burial with the honors of war. The old family bible of Johann Wilhelm and of Philippe Bernhardt is now in the possession of Mr. Barnhart of Kansas City. About a hundred years ago the family name was changed from Bernhardt to Barnhart so that the spelling and pronunciation might conform. On the maternal side Mr. Barnhart is descended from George Gooding, who was born in England in 1632, and emigrated about 1650 to Plymouth Colony, settling at Dighton, Massachusetts. Five generations of the Goodings are buried at Dighton. Mr. Barnhart’s maternal...

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