John R. Burr
Morris Co. Up


Biographical and Genealogical History of Morris County New Jersey. Illustrated. Vol. II., Lewis Publishing Company, New York and Chicago, 1899.

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One of the reliable business men of Morristown, engaged in contracting and building, was born in Morris county, on the 2d of August, 1861, a son of David A. and Jane E. (CHAPMAN) BURR. Tradition says that the Burr family originated in Germany and was founded in America at an early day. The father of our subject was born in Morris county, in 1812, and was a son of David BURR, a native of Chester county, Pennsylvania. David A. BURR was a blacksmith by trade and one of the worthy citizens of the community, honorable in his dealings and faithful to his duties in all the relations of life.

He served in the Union army during the Civil war, enlisting, in 1861, in the Twenty-seventh Regiment of New Jersey Volunteers, and re-enlisting in 1862, as a member of the Thirty-third New Jersey Infantry, serving with that command until the close of the war. His death occurred at the age of sixty-three years, and his wife, who was a daughter of John and Nancy (COLE) CHAPMAN, passed away in 1876. They were the parents of seven children:

  • James A., of Chester, New Jersey;
  • Joseph E., of Succasunna;
  • George B., of Dover;
  • Charles Y., of Baker City, Oregon;
  • Jennie, wife of William A. DALY, of Los Angeles, California,
  • Fannie C., wife of Theodore P. WAGNER, of Portland, Oregon; and
  • John R.

The last named spent his youth in the country until seventeen years of age and then began learning the carpenter's trade with his brother, in Chester, New Jersey. For six years he remained at that place and then removed to Rockaway, New Jersey, where he continued to make his home until 1881, since which time he has been a resident of Morristown. Here he engaged in business as a journeyman for three years, then began contracting and building on his own account, and subsequently became a member of the firm of Reeve & Burr. These gentlemen enjoy a liberal share of the public patronage in their line, for their excellent workmanship, their promptness and their fidelity to the terms of a contract have secured, them an excellent business which is constantly increasing in importance and volume. Many of the substantial structures of the city stand as monuments to their, thrift, skill and handiwork.

Mr. BURR was married in Somerville, New Jersey, on the 3d of June, 1882, the lady of his choice being Miss Sallie O. STEELE, daughter of Cornelius and Lydia A. (BIRD) STEELE. Their children are

  • David A.,
  • Lydia A. and
  • George F.

Mr. BURR has been a member of the board of fire wardens of Morristown for seven years and is a citizen who manifests a deep and active interest in all that pertains to the welfare of the community. He is a popular member of the Masonic fraternity, affiliating with Cincinnati Lodge No. 3, at Morristown, and is a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He is a man of earnest purpose, upright principles and indefatigable energy, true to his duties in all the relations of life.

This biography was scanned and contributed by Catherine Smith DeMayo.


This page was last modified on:  01 January, 2014

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