The Carlton Papers

Carlton Papers begin with the life of John Barnes

The Carlton Papers begin with the life of John Barnes, who we learn was born on 2 February 1799. John was the son of Brinsley III of Alexander County, North Carolina (1766-1855), and the grandson of Deaf John Barnes. Until these papers were found, little was known about John. The papers also reveal new information about his son, the Reverend Solomon D. Barnes (1846 – 1938), and three Carlton families, since three of Solomon’s daughters married Carlton’s.

These papers came to us mysteriously. They are a result of the Foundation’s website from unknown collaborators. They appear to have been compiled over a long period. We think that the papers were compiled by Pauline (Barnes) West (10 August 1921 – 25 December 1972). Pauline was the daughter of John Sylvanus “Bane” Barnes (22 January 1870 – 01 August 1951) and Ida Walker (18 July 1879 – 17 September 1961). Pauline was Solomon’s granddaughter.

Further research is being conducted by Hugh W. Barnes (recognized as HWB in the papers). Hugh’s research will only be on John and to a lesser extent, on John’s son Solomon. For a detailed account of Solomon’s life that includes a photo see “Solomon Barnes – Man of God”

(John was a wealthy Wilkes County, North Carolina planter. Through the Papers, we learned that he owned many slaves, was a college-educated teacher, and an ordained minister who was active in politics. For a long period, he served as a Justice of the Peace. John is Hugh’s 2nd great grandfather.
We know that the papers are by and large accurate because they contain much information that we know is correct. For this reason, the Foundation seeks assistance with further research, since Foundation task prohibits Hugh’s full-time involvement.
Interested volunteers may send an email message to
or call (828)292-9150.
Preliminary research reveals the following:

George W. Pascal’s History of North Carolina Baptist states that in the Summer of 1832, John, along with the Reverend James C. Furman, conducted a series of meeting in Camden, South Carolina, and later came to Charlotte, North Carolina to conduct the cities first baptism. A 1976 letter from Dr. J. Glenn Clayton states that the Furman’s Baptist Historical Collection has a pamphlet authored by John “containing his defense of a heresy charge. Dr. Clayton went on to say that John “apparently embraced some of Alexander Campbell’s ideas.”

Campbell (12 September 1788 – 4 March 1866)

Campbell, an ordained Baptist minister, was a Scots-Irish immigrant. As a leader of a reform effort that is historically known as the Restoration Movement and by some as the “Stone-Campbell Movement.” The Movement resulted in the development of non-denominational Christian churches, which stressed reliance on scripture and few essentials.