As a boy and youth Abraham Barton Lancaster received good educational advantages, attending the public schools of Lexington, after which he assisted for a time as a clerk in his father's store. Enlisting in 1862 in Company D, Duke's Second Kentucky Regiment, C. S. A., he served under General John Morgan, taking an active part in his numerous campaigns until September, 1863, when he was captured at Island No. 10, and taken to Camp Chase, in Ohio, where he was first confined as a prisoner, later being transferred with other prisoners to Camp Douglas, in Chicago, Illinois. In the winter of 1863 and 1864, Mr. Lancaster made his escape from prison and remained in exile in Canada until the following summer, when he returned to Lexington and resumed his former employment, remaining as a clerk in the store until the death of his father, when he succeeded to the entire business. After managing it successfully until 1901, he sold out his interests in the store and devoted his entire time and energies to his private affairs for a number of years.
Mr. Lancaster has been twice married, first, in 1876, to Susan Ann Harris, who was born in Virginia, a daughter of Albert T. and Mary (Woolfolk) Harris. She died in 1896, leaving three children, namely: Merritt Proctor, Joseph Woolfolk, and Mary Eraser. Mr. Lancaster married, second, in 1897, Elizabeth Hill, who was born in Ohio county, Kentucky, a daughter of Samuel E. and Naomi (Barnett) Hill. Mr. Lancaster and his family are members of the Episcopal church.