Image of Robert Barr


Lifetime: 1849 - 1912 Passed: ≈ 111 years ago


Writer, Novelist



Robert Barr

Robert Barr was a Scottish-Canadian short story writer and novelist.

Robert Barr was born in Barony, Lanark, Scotland to Robert Barr and Jane Watson. In 1854, he emigrated with his parents to Upper Canada at the age of four years old. His family settled on a farm near the village of Muirkirk. Barr assisted his father with his job as a carpenter, and developed a sound work ethic. Robert Barr then worked as a steel smelter for a number of years before he was educated at Toronto Normal School in 1873 to train as a teacher.

After graduating Toronto Normal School, Barr became a teacher, and eventually headmaster/principal of the Central School of Windsor, Ontario in 1874. While Barr worked as head master of the Central School of Windsor, Ontario, he began to contribute short stories—often based on personal experiences, and recorded his work. In August 1876, when he was 27, Robert Barr married Ontario-born Eva Bennett, who was 21. According to the 1891 England Census, the couple appears to have had three children, Laura, William, and Andrew.

In 1876, Barr quit his teaching position to become a staff member of publication, and later on became the news editor for the Detroit Free Press. Barr wrote for this newspaper under the pseudonym, "Luke Sharp." The idea for this pseudonym was inspired during his morning commute to work when Barr saw a sign that read "Luke Sharp, Undertaker." In 1881, Barr left Canada for England in order to start a new weekly version of "The Detroit Free Press Magazine."

The 1911 census places Robert Barr, "a writer of fiction," at Hillhead, Woldingham, Surrey, a small village southeast of London, living with his wife, Eva, their son William, and two female servants. At this home, the author died from heart disease on 21 October 1912.

Books by Robert Barr

The Triumphs of Eugene Valmont  Cover image

The Triumphs of Eugene Valmont

Detective Short Story Mystery Crime Thriller Justice Thief British

Valmont is a French detective who was made to leave the force when, through a mistake (explained in the first three stories in the collection, he arrests an English detective rather than the jewel thief. He sets up in London and, while shaking his he...

One Day's Courtship and The Heralds of Fame Cover image

One Day's Courtship and The Heralds of Fame

Romance Humour
Love Humorous Fiction America Courtship United States

In One Day's Courtship, British artist John Trenton visits Quebec and tries to slip in a quick canoe trip on his last day in town to photograph the scenic Shawenegan Falls. In The Heralds of Fame, a freshman novelist heads to America with his suitcas...

The Sword Maker Cover image

The Sword Maker

Fantasy Adventure Fiction Novel
Mystery Redemption Thriller Self-Discovery Suspense Destiny Betrayal Magic Sword

In the mystical realm of Eldoria, a land brimming with ancient secrets and unfathomable power, lies the enigmatic workshop of a master sword maker known only as Robert Barr. Renowned throughout the kingdom, his creations are revered for their unmatch...

Prince of Good Fellows Cover image

Prince of Good Fellows

Robert Barr (1849 - 1912) was a Scottish Journalist, editor, humorist and author. A Prince of Good Fellows was published in 1902, and is a series of Historical Fiction stories about the young James V, King of Scots (1512 – 1542). The chapters are ful...

In a Steamer Chair and Other Stories Cover image

In a Steamer Chair and Other Stories

Thirteen short stories by one of the most famous writers in his day. Robert Barr was a British Canadian short story writer and novelist, born in Glasgow, Scotland. In London of the 1890s Barr became a more prolific author - publishing a book a year -...

Chicago Princess Cover image

Chicago Princess

After working several years in foreign affairs, and after winning and then losing a fortune, Rupert Tremorne is stranded in Nagasaki, at the end of his wits and in some debt. His only chance is to take the post as private secretary to the Millionaire...

Revenge! Cover image


A collection of 20 short stories of the crime, detective, and thriller variety, sharing a common theme of .... you guessed it, revenge, and often with surprise conclusions. Elements of the style of Alfred Hitchcock may be found among many of the tale...