Charles Pemberton Ware (1863 – 1948)

Charles Pemberton Ware, “Uncle Charlie”, the historical patriarch of the Ware family, traveled and wrote extensively during his lifetime, visiting and researching the family. His legacy is a collection of letters and monographs reporting on the family and his research. Some of these letters have survived, either in their original form or as copies, and are in the possession of the compiler of these notes. Credit for their continued existence must be given to Rev. Charles Crossfield Ware, a nephew; George Welch Ware, a great-nephew; and Judge Forrest Calico, a kinsman through the Storms family.

Charles P. Ware was born on February 18, 1863 in Garrard County, Kentucky at the height of the war of northern aggression. His parents were Squire Lancaster Ware and Julia Ann Storms Ware. At that time Garrard County was the scene of considerable unrest because of the war. A union camp was located nearby at Camp Dick Robinson in northern Garrard County. A number of skirmishes were fought around Lancaster following the battle of Perryville on October 8, 1862. Many families, including the Ware family were split because of the war. His Democratic sympathies of his later years must have reflected family feelings. His father named him after Confederate General John Pemberton, the Confederate commander at Vicksburg. His grandfather, Henry Ware, owned a number of slaves at his death in 1854. However, his father’s brother, William “Bill” Ware joined the Union cause and apparently saw a considerable amount of action. There is no trace in his letters of any family enmity because of his uncle’s service in the Union cause.

CP&NoraWareCharles Pemberton Ware and his wife, Nora Lynn Ware.

Charles P. Ware married Nora Lynn on December 24, 1885 in Garrard County. According to one of his letters he moved to Somerset when he was twenty-five or about 1888. However, his first child, who was born in 1888, died in 1890 and was buried in the Buffalo Springs Cemetery near Stanford, Kentucky in Lincoln County. His father, Squire Lancaster Ware died in 1887 and was buried in the same cemetery. The child was probably brought back from Somerset to Buffalo Springs for burial on the same lot with her grandfather. In a monograph dated December 14, 1946 he states that he was working as mechanic for the railroad in December 1889 in Somerset and that he started working “57 years ago” or 1889. He was later promoted to a railway clerk for the Southern Railroad. He lived in Somerset from around 1888-1890 and died there in 1948.

In a 1938 listing contained in Who’s Who in Kentucky, Charles P. Ware is described as a “retired railroad man and horticulturist… educated in common schools and private studies.” He was the owner and manager of a farm, a member of the Brotherhood or Railway Clerks, Secretary Treasurer of the Railway Pension Association, a member of the Filson Club, National Geographic Society, the Christian Church (which follows family tradition) and a Mason. By 1938 only two of his five children were living, Louis Ware of Chicago and New York and Daisy Fritts of Phillipsburg, New Jersey.

As noted above, Charles P. Ware traveled extensively during his later years visiting his family members, distant and close. His letters are replete with descriptions of their relationship to the family as well as their condition in the world. They contain information not found anywhere else and have been used extensively in connection with notes and entries on the Ware and Storms families. Although his letters and other writings are assumed to be accurate when they report firsthand information his other research and conclusions about Dudley Ware’s migration to Kentucky and the descent of the family line from a New England Ware may not have been so accurate. His notes, if any, have not survived and his research in this regard cannot be verified. Apparently many of his conclusions about Dudley Ware were taken from family oral history.

Source:  Leonard Ware Smith

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