from Hart County, Kentucky – Biographies
John B. Cook, the third of William F. Cook’s six sons and five daughters, was born October 23, 1819, in Hart County, Kentucky. William F. Cook was the second of Henry Cook’s five sons and two daughters and was born March 27, 1789, in Virginia. Henry Cook was a farmer and slave owner in Virginia, and immigrated to Kentucky before its evacuation by the Indians. William F. Cook lived at home until his marriage at the age of twenty-two; he had learned the stone mason’s trade in youth, and worked at it in his county. In 1815 he entered 250 acres of wild land in Hart County, most of which is now owned and cultivated by John B. This tract he improved and cultivated, building on it a log cabin, the pioneer style of architecture; here he spent the remainder of his life. The maiden name of his wife was Miss Nancy Gum, one of a family of two children – a son and a daughter; her mother, Margaret Ann Kennedy, a native of Maryland, was married three times, to McComus, Gum and Dale. William F. Cook was one of the number who went out with General Hopkins in his Indian campaign in Indiana; his death occurred June 21, 1865; that of his wife July 3, 1865; he was a member of the Christian Church, she of the Baptist. John B. Cook worked at home part of the time for himself until 1850, when he went to selling goods near Hardyville, where he remained nearly two years; he then came home and took charge, (with a brother) of his father’s farm, and continued this until 1865 – the year of the death of his parents. January 11, 1866, he was united in marriage to Miss Mary F. Harlow, the third of Jesse and Nancy (Wright) Harlow’s four daughters. Jesse Harlow was a native of Barren County, and his wife of La Rue. A short time before the death of his father, John Cook and his brother bought sixty acres of land – a part of the original tract covered by the patent, which had been sold by William F. Cook. After his brother’s death he inherited sixteen and one-half acres, thus making forty-six and two third acres owned by him at marriage. This he has increased to 200 acres, and his place is well improved with good residence, barns and stables; the residence was built by his father; he raises all the cereals common to our climate, and tobacco, to which he turns his particular attention; he has taken three premiums on bright tobacco at the Louisville tobacco fairs three different years, and in 1864 sold a crop for $2,700, $170 per 100 pounds. He began with no fortune but is now worth about $10,000; he is the father of two children: William Lee, who is attending school in Glasgow, Kentucky, and Mary Clementina, who died in 1876, in the seventh year of her age. During life his wife was a member of the Christian church, of which Mr. Cook and son are both members; he is a member of the Masonic order, and in politics was, in ante bellum days, a Whig, but since has been a conservative member of the Democratic party. The names of William F. Cook’s other children are George W., Elizabeth (McComus), Valentine, Margaret A. (Lindell, Carter), James M., Mary J. (Hardy), Martha S. (Prewitt), Dorinda T. (Edwards), William W., Henry C. and Jonathan W.