View Full Version : Obed La-Farr : musician
10-01-2009, 12:03 AM
I found my GG Grandfather born in abt 1837 in Witley, Surrey was actually born Farr. My mother told the story of this side of the family coming from France, but it appears to be he changed the name to get more work as a musician.
He is listed as a bandleader in the Surrey Advertiser Newspaper of 17th Feb 1866 with reference to Band Leader, Godalming, Westbrook Mill.
Does anyone have information about musicians in the 1860's - would it have been better for him to get work with a more exotic name?
10-01-2009, 12:39 PM
It certainly looks like he thought the name change would help his career. Its easy to see how family stories start, isn't it? I bet he was quite a character..he is Obey La Farre in 1881 I notice! He gives his age as 41, but I think he was 45 or older.
IGI has his christening date as 21 Feb 1836 Witley, Surrey, parents George and Mary Farr, so his actual birth date is early 1836, 1835 or earlier.
10-01-2009, 1:52 PM
His name was Obed prob short for Obediah. Other Farr names in Witley were Mercy and Josiah .... so biblical choice of names. Lots of farrs in Witley so doubt they came from France. Obed had a brother George Thomas Farr born 1830. There were several George Farr born between 1794 and 1811in Witley.
10-01-2009, 11:08 PM
Thanks, no I definately think the France thing was a family myth - thank heaven my mother did not find out about it, she was quite proud to have 'french' heritage! Interesting information about the biblical names, and makes sense.
I wonder where misicians played back in those days. Taverns I suppose.
10-01-2009, 11:24 PM
Music Halls! http://bestsmileys.com/music2/4.gif
Wrong area geographically, I know, but this (http://www.parishchest.com/shop/index.php?cmd=viewproduct&cat=&id=P17377&pageOffset=0) gives an insight into what they were and who played them.
11-01-2009, 12:40 AM
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