Harpers In Missouri
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. and "Minnie"
Belle Brooks Harper

This website is dedicated to the memory
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. (March 18, 1883 - April 29,
1959) and
"Minnie" Belle Brooks Harper (January 15,
1885 - April 16, 1981). (In the bible of
"Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper
, "Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper
wrote down that her date of birth was
January 15, 1885. The Federal Census of 1900 also states
that at the time of the census which was taken on June 20,
"Minnie" Belle Brooks was 15. The census also lists
her birthdate as being in 1885. The Harper headstone at
Mount Zion
Cemetery in Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri states the
date of birth of
"Minnie" Belle Brooks Harper was January
15, 1884.)
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. married "Minnie" Belle Brooks
on October 31, 1904 in Pemiscot County, at the courthouse
in Caruthersville, Missouri. The wedding ceremony was
officiated by Probate Judge Sterling H. McCarty and the
witnesses were Mary E. Brooks, the step-mother of
"Minnie" Belle Brooks, and Flora Tell Brooks Rudder, the
sister of
"Minnie" Belle Brooks. A copy of the marriage
license of
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. and "Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper
can be seen on Harper-Page 5.

"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. died on April 21, 1959 and
"Minnie" Belle Brooks Harper died on April 16, 1981.
Both died in Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri and
are buried beside each other at Mount Zion Cemetery,
Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri. The information below
on Mount Zion Cemetery can be found by clicking on the
following link:

Link to Information on Mount Zion Cemetery,
Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri

Mount Zion Cemetery
Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri
Lat: 36°04'26"N, Lon: 89°48'38"W
Pemiscot Twp, Sec 30
Also known as Upper Cooter Cemetery.

The map below showing Pemiscot County, Steele,
Missouri with the locations of the Harper Home and
Mount Zion Cemetery was modified using Microsoft
Paint. The original map can be found by clicking on
the following link:

Map of Pemiscot County, Steele, Missouri and Mount
Zion Cemetery

Below are pictures of the Harper headstone found at
Mount Zion Cemetery in Pemiscot County, Steele,
Missouri. The inscription on the headstone says "They
gave their today for our tomorrow".

For additional information on
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr.
"Minnie" Belle Brooks Harper go to Harper-Page 5
through Harper-Page 8 or go to www.findagrave.com by
clicking on the links below:

Link For "Marvin" H. Harper, Sr.

Link For "Minnie" Belle Brooks Harper
This website contains information on the genealogy of the family
"Marvin" H. Harper, Sr. and his wife Minnie Belle Brooks
This website starts
with the earliest
ancestor of
H. Harper, Sr.
Patrick Harper, who
was born in Ireland.
He came to
Gloucester County,
Virginia in 1653. He
died in Gloucester
County, Virginia in
Resources used
for this website


2) Family Bible of
"Minnie" Belle  
Brooks Harper

3) Golden
Anniversary Book
from the 50th
Anniversary of
"Marvin" H.
Harper, Sr.
"Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper

4) "Dorothy"
Mae Gerding

"Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper

6) "Roy" Winfield

7) Internet

8) Nita Jane
Dickerson Gatia

9) "Ruth" Rita
Harper Toohey
Genealogy Pages

To go to the first
page of the  
Harper genealogy
click on
More information on Mount Zion Cemetery can
be found at the link below:

Link To Mount Zion Cemetery

The following picture of the Harper Coat of Arms was modified using Microsoft
Paint. The original picture can be found by clicking on the following link:

Picture of The Harper Coat of Arms

The following information about the Harper Coat of Arms and the Harper
surname can be found by clicking on the following link:

About the Harper family coat-of-arms:

Motto: Et suavis et fortis "Both gentle and strong"

Arms: Argent, a lion rampant sable langued gules, a bordure engrailed.

Crest: A boar passant or, ducally gorged, langued and crined gules.

The surname "Harper" as with many family names probably orginated by one
who played the harp. Although many Harpers probably served as court musicians
or minstrals, the name may also indicate a member of the Celtic priesthood. The
Celtic priesthood had three divisions: Poets, who composed sacred sagas and
poems, Bards, who recited the sacred poems, and Harpers, who set them to music.

The following information about the origin of the Harper surname can be found
by clicking on the following link:

"Harper" Surname - Orkney Scottish - Celtic / Pictish;  An occupational name at
one time hereditary in the household of great families.  Known in Scotland from
the earliest days.  Possibly a translation from Gaelic where Macchrutter means
"son of the harper".  At any rate the surname is known in Orkney from as early
as 1582 in Evie.


This occupational name is from either the Old English word Heapere or the Old
French word Harpeor, both with the meaning "harp player". In early times, the
harper was often an heriditary official in the households of many great families,
and Brehon law ranks the harp as "the one art of music which deserves nobility".

In England, Robert le (the) Harper lived in Hampshire in 1186 and Reginald le
Harper lived in Worcestershire in 1275. Isabella Herpour, Willclinus and
Rogerius Harper were on the 1379 Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls. Sir Lister Holte and
Mary Harper were married in St. George’s Church, London 1748.

In Scotland, five men with the title of "le Harper", William of Edinburgh, Uchired
of Lanark, Robert of Ayr, and John and Roger of Berwick rendered homage to
the English crown in 1296. In 1297 Uchired was granted a title to some land in
Fyshergate to be held by him and his heirs. Walter Harper lived in Buittle in
1376. Pate Harper was paid some money in 1507 from the Exchequer.

In some instances the name could be an Anglicization of the Gaelic name
MacChruiter which means "son of the harper".

Many of the Scottish Harpers were members of the Clan Buchanan.

Francis and William Harper came to Virginia from England in 1635 and 1638
respectively. Eleven others came between 1640 and 1655.

The information above can be found on the following link:

My Georgia Harpers Website by Carolyn Lee Harper Johnson

More History on the Harper Name:

The name of Harper comes from England where, originally, it was "le Harpur." It
is believed to have been given to those who played the harp at fairs and festivals.
Families of this name were to be found at early dates in many English counties --
principally Leicester, Warwick, Stafford, Derby, Oxford and Kent. British
records indicate the Harpers were of the landed gentry and nobility of the British
Isles. A brief account of some outstanding members of these families follows.
Richard le Harpur was the earliest of this name to appear in the records. It was in
connection with the grant of certain lands to the canons of Kenelworrth [sic] by
"Hugh le Harpur, son of Richard le Harpur." This grant occurred in the time of
King Henry I, youngest son of William the Conqueror, who lived from 1068 to
1135 AD. In later generations, male members of the le Harpur family appeared
with the given names of Gilbert, Robert, John, Henry, William, Humphrey,
Nicholas, George, Thomas, Edward and Charles. Of these, the most common were
John, William, Henry and Robert, which appeared in almost every family.
The first of the family to be knighted apparently was Sir Robert le Harpur
(seventhy generation), son of Gilbert le Harpur and his wife Isolda (Morton) le
Harpur. Sir Robert lived in the time of Edward II (1284-1327) and bore for his
arms a plain cross, and the same for his crest, issuing out of a coronet. he married
Isabel Hercy, daughter of Henry Hercy, Lord of Pillerton Hercy, in
Warwickshire. For the next seven centuries the records are replete with the
names of the various le Harpur and Harpur knights and barons. Many men of
these families married the daughters of barons, earls and dukes.
Women of the le Harpur families were named Dorothy, Anna, Anne, Jane, Isabel,
Mary, Elizabeth, Winifred, Catherine, Barbara and Susan, with Dorthy, Mary
and Elizabeth appearing most frequently. Many le Harpur daughters married the
sons of prominent knights, barons, earls and dukes.
Sir John le Harpur (tenth generation), son of Sir Richard le Harpur and his wife
Alice (de Culy) le Harpur, married Eleanor Grober, daughter and heir of William
Grober of Rushall. They had three sons: William, Richard and Henry. The Eldest
of these, William, became Lord of Rushall. he adopted the former de Rushall arms
as his own; known later as the Harpur arms, they were used by several
descendants, including Sir Henry Harper, the seventh Baronet. The arms were:
argent, a lion rampant within a bordure engrailed, sable. The crest was : A boar
passant, or, ducally gorged and crined, gules. In these and later generations, most
of the Harpur men matriculated at one or another of the colleges at Oxford.
Sir Henry Harper (or Harpur) (fourteenth Generation) was the first of the family
to be created a Baronet. This occurred on 8 December, 1626, in the second year of
King Charles I. Sir Henry was born about 1578 and died in 1638. he resided in
Calke in Derbyshire. he matriculated at Brasenose College, Oxford, on 20
February, 1595/6, at the age of seventeen. He was admitted to the Inner Temple in
1598. Sir Henry was the third son of Sir John Harper and his wife Jane (Findern)
Harper. He married Barbara (Faunt) Beaumont, daughter of Anthony Faunt and
his wife Elizabeth (Noell) Faunt) Beaumont, daughter of Anthony Faunt and his
wife Elizabeth (Noell) Faunt of Leicestershire, and widow of Sir Henry Beaumont,
Baronet, of Gracedieu in Leicester; they had nine children.
Sir John Harper (or Harpur), Beronet (sixteenth generation), eldest child of Sir
John Harper, Baronet, of Calke, and his wife Susan (West) Harper, succeeded to
the Baronetcy in 1669; he married 17 September, 1674, Anne Willoughby,
daughter of William, Lord Willoughby, sixth Baron of Parham. In 1677, this Sir
John Harper inherited the estate of a cousin (also named Sir John Harper, of
Swarkeston, Derbyshire) who died without issue. The wealth of various branches
of the family thus became concentrated.
Sir John Harper (or Harpur), Baronet (seventeenth generation), only son of Sir
John and Anne (Willoughby) Harper, was born 23 March, 1649 [this date
apparently should be 1679] and died 24 June, 1741, at Calke Abbey. he was an
extraordinary character in many respects, and was a person of great worth and
standing in the area. He married Catherine Crewe, daughter and co-heir of
Thomas, Lord Crewe, of Stene.
Sir Henry Harper (or Harpur), Baronet (eighteenth generation), was born about
1709 and died 17 June, 1748. he married (by special license) 2 October, 1734,
Lady Caroline Manners, daughter of John, Second Duke of Rutland, and grand-
daughter of the Earl of Harborough.
Sir Henry Harper (or Harpur), Baronet (twentieth generation), was born 13 May,
1763 and died 7 February, 1819, as a result of a fall. By Royal License, 11 April,
1808, he took the name of Crewe, it being that of his great-grandmother. His
children and lineal descendants all bore the name of Harper-Crewe (or Harpur-
Sir Vauceny Harper-Crewe (or Harpur-Crewe) (twenty-third generation) was
born 14 October, 1846. He married Georgianna Jane Henrietta Eliza Lovell, and
succeeded to the Baronetcy in 1886. He died 13 December, 1924, without a male
successor and the title became extinct.
Branches of the Hrper line in other counties adopted arms somewhat different
from those of Sir William le Harpur, of the eleventh generation. Several of these
used the same golden boar, passant, in the crest, and all used a lion, rampant in
the arms. In one case, however, the lion was sable (black) on the argent (white
background without the black bordure; in another case, the lion was gold on a
black background, with gold bordure; in a third case, the lion was red on a white
background, with a black bordure. The Harper-Crewes used quartered arms,
Harper and Crewe, and latter being a white lion, rampant, on a blue background.
The Harper motto was "Te Deum Laudamus." (You God We Praise).
Since the eldest son in an English family inherited his father's hereditary title and
estates, the younger sons had to strike out for themselves. Some of these must have
been the Harpers who found their way to America.

The information above can be found at the following link:

There was a mass exodus of Harpers out of Ireland during the 1600s. Seems that
the English starting persecuting the Harpers in Ireland because they felt the
Harpers were stirring up nationalistic overtures against the English.

"The period starting from the 1600s during English rule in Ireland was difficult
for Irish harpers as the harp as a folk and court instrument was suppressed to
prevent a resurgence of nationalism.  Harps were burnt and harpers executed.
The tragic extinction of this harping tradition at the end of the eighteenth century
had a number of causes: the Angloization of the Irish (and Scottish) cultures, the
increased popularity of step-dancing and the fiddle, and the inability of the harp
to play the musical accidentals required for classical music, which started coming
in to vogue in Dublin and Edinburgh during the then Baroque era. Only in Wales
was the Folk harp tradition unbroken."

This may give a reason why the ancestor of
"Marvin" H. Harper, Patrick Harper,
migrated to Virginia from Ireland in 1653. For more information about the
persecution of the Harpers in Ireland during the 1600s please click on the link

All of the pictures that were added to this website were done using the free edition
of fxphoto which can be downloaded from the following website: http://www.fxfoto.
com/fxdownload.htm. Some of the photos were modified using the program
Microsoft Paint that is found on Windows XP. If for some reason you can't use
Microsoft Paint then go to the following website and download the free program
Paint.NET: http://fileforum.betanews.com/detail/PaintNET/1096481993/1. The
website itself was put together using the program Yahoo! Sitebuilder that can be
downloaded for free at the following website: http://webhosting.yahoo.
com/ps/sb/index.php. The website is hosted by Yahoo. Information about Yahoo
Web Hosting can be found at the following website: http://smallbusiness.yahoo.
com/webhosting/. To contact the author of the website please send an e-mail to
Ricky Harper at the following address: ricky.harper@comcast.net.
The direct ancestors
"Marvin" H.
Harper, Sr.
as well as
the name  of his wife
"Minnie" Belle
Brooks Harper
shown with the names
in color. For the men
the color is
and for the
women it is