Named for his maternal great-grandfather, David Elder was born April 5, 1835. Although he was only 20 years old in 1855, he was granted "On-Trial" status with the Georgia Methodist Conference. He was assigned to the Warrenton or Augusta Circuit the next year and by 1857 he was named Deacon. As such he could perform all the duties of a minister except for rites of baptism and communion. At the 1859 conference he was appointed "Elder" after which he was free to perform all the duties of a full-fledged Methodist minister.
He was still single at 26 years of age when he joined Capt. Dunn's Co., (also known as Bartow Artillery) of the Georgia Volunteers. According to the muster roll in CSA.pdf, he signed up "for the duration of the war" at Griffin, Georgia August 21,1861. He was one of the lucky ones. His unit remained in Savannah when the rest of the regiment was ordered to Virginia. It was assigned to the 22nd Battalion GA Heavy Artillery in November 1862.
David met his future bride either when serving the Savannah area circuit or during the war years. He and Amelia Anna Heidt were married "near Savannah" November 10, 1864. Their first four children were born in Georgia; but the youngest two were born near Sherman, Texas where they moved in 1877.
Lillian Dell b. August 4, 1866 d. Aug 20, 1868
Minnie E. b. August 23, 1870
Leola Muzette b. November 29, 1873
William Henry b. August 2, 1875
Anna Heidt b. January 25, 1878
Walter Benjamin b. June 30, 1880
David died in Sherman, Texas November 19, 1910 and Amelia, June 14, 1914. Two obituaries were located for him:
Ft. Worth Star Telegram 11-20-1910 Sherman Minister Dies.
SHERMAN, Texas, Nov. 19. -- Rev. D. E. Starr, a prominent local Methodist minister, died here this afternoon. He was a member of the North Texas Conference thirty-two years, coming here from Georgia. He is survived by a wife and five children, all grown.
Ft. Worth Star Telegram 11-21-1910 Sherman Preacher Dead.
SHERMAN, Texas, Nov. 21. -- Rev. David Elmer (sic) Starr, native of Georgia, 75 years of age, fifty-three years a clergyman of the Methodist Episcopal Church south, and a Confederate veteran, died at his home in West Sherman Saturday. The funeral services were conducted today, several Methodist clergyman officiating, after which Internment was at West Hill cemetery. He had resided in Texas thirty-two years, thirty of which were spent on the farm just east of the city.
David's eldest daughter, Minnie Parker.pdf and his son, W. H. Starr, provided the family data for this line. W. H. signed page 2, but the data appears on the Sherman Democrat newspaper letterhead. Minnie (Starr), who signed other sheets of data, was the wife of Ernest J. Parker, editor of the paper in 1925.