John Bair, son of John and Elizabeth (Miller) Bair, natives of Lancaster County, Penn., was born May 25, 1816, in Lancaster County, where he was reared and educated. In 1845 he came to York Furnace, Lower Chanceford Township, and engaged in the manufacture of charcoal iron, and conducted a general merchandise business.
In 1850 he added to his other business lumber manufacturing, saw-milling and lime burning, and in 1855 he added the sale and purchase of grain, phosphates and general railroad merchandise. In 1855 he began the subscription and erection of the York Furnace Bridge, being president of the company. The bridge was destroyed in 1857 by ice and wind. Mr. Bair was married, in 1855, to Susan Groff, of Lancaster County, daughter of David Groff. They had two children: Robert Cabeen and Lizzie.
In 1863 Mr. Bair accepted a position on the staff of Maj. R. W. Shenk, Pennsylvania Volunteers. He is a Knight Templar.