Barnes Website News October 2018

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Don’t forget that blue text indicates a link to supplemental information. Double-clicking enlarges an image or document.  Right, click on it to review the content.  Having been appointed guardian, for a relative who recently passed, I fell short in meeting deadlines to get out our newsletters and updates to the website. With his passing, we are returning to a normal schedule.

For the first time, the newsletter is being added to the website. Several items are being placed here on a temporary basis while the new site is being developed. A more logical organization will occur when the new site is operational.  You will not receive a copy of the newsletter for your files until the next newsletter release.  This will only be available to subscribers. This Barnes update is found under the Foothills and North Carolina History tab not the Barnes tab on the website.  This update concerns the War of Regulation (1766-1771). Brinsley, Sr., Deaf John and James “Handsome Jim” and the Reverend Edward Teague to whom some of us are related are document Regulators. Other Barnes’s probably were participants, but we have no documentation. The Regulator article is broader in scope than just our family which is why it is in the Foothills and North Carolina History section.  Many consider the War a prelude to the American Revolution.

New contributor Connie McGee has written an article on Captain Claude Barnes. Where you will find it at along with Connie’s biography.

Effectively immediately, some new research about your family has been omitted from the website. You will not be advised of all known family information unless you either subscribe to our newsletter or register as a user without receipt of email notifications. Information on how to do this may be found below. Since we operate solely with volunteers, expect delays in our response. If you received this by email, you have met this requirement.  This action should not be viewed negatively. It is done to encourage the sharing of information. Most of you are taking the attitude that you own your ancestors and your findings on them. In so doing, you are shooting yourself in your own foot while failing to learn what others know and continue to learn about them. This new policy should assist everyone by sharing and increasing what is known about our family. We are dedicated to learning about our ancestors. No one earns more than $1.00 per year at the Foundation. Our sole purpose is to share and educate. Please help by making a tax-deductible donation.

17th Claude & Amanda Barnes Reunion (2018) Couer d'Aline, ID
17th Claude & Amanda Barnes Reunion (2018) Couer d’Aline, ID

Two Reunions: This year we celebrated with two reunions one on each coast. This marks the coming together of two major Barnes lines whose early settlers died in Wilkes County, North Carolina.
The West Coast Reunion was on Saturday, July 21st, 2018 in, Coeur d’ Alene City Park, Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho. The event was organized by our new contributor Connie McGee and was initially organized as the 17th Barnes Reunion honoring Claude R. (Steamboat Captain) and his wife, Ellena Amanda Larsen Barnes. Claude is the son of Richard Oliver Barnes, grandson of William Alexander Barnes, and possibly great-grandson of Peter Barnes, great-great-grandson of Solomon Barnes. 75 folks signed in for the event.


Emmet “Bud” Barnes 100th Birthday- 2018


Emmett “Bud” Barnes was born 8 July 1918 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and recently celebrated his 100th birthday with family and friends. Bud descends from Solomon, Sr. (circa 1742-1807).  Bud and his brother Gene on the left behind Bud. His son Don is behind Carol Barnes Bosanko, who is Bud’s baby sister and 18 years his junior.

With this issue, we will begin recognizing family members who have passed away and the new website will provide a place for preserving this information. See the attached file. It will be organized differently with the new site. Oscar Keller, Jr. was Brinsley’s 4th great-grandson through James “Handsome Jim” Barnes. C.C. Sherrill was Brinley’s 3rd great grandson through “Handsome Jim.” obit link 

Contribute to Our Survival and Learn about Your Past.  Volunteers are needed.  Some require nor research nor writing skills.  Link to our Volunteer Needs

Financial Contributions will allow us to make dramatic long-range changes. With your contributions, we will collect large volumes of old records relating to the Barnes families most which are not available through or other online sources. They are scattered in many courthouses throughout the U.S. We are also undergoing a radical redesign of the website. If you wish to be kept informed of new documents as they are added to the site, it is recommended that you subscribe to our quarterly family newsletter. An inventory has been made of all Barnes documents in the Wilkes County Courthouse. These are not documents are available online. Trips are planned to Wilkes, Rowan and McDowell Counties for document acquisition.

Most of these documents are only available by knowing how to search for them at State Archives and paying a $20.00 fee for non-NC residents or making a visit to one of many distant courthouses throughout the U.S. Most of these documents are not available from Also, our documents are more legible than the original since we use a special enhancement process which makes them more readable than the original which are generally of low quality.

Your Financial Assistance is Appreciated.  We pride ourselves in providing you research from sources that are generally unavailable. We do this with the assistance of unpaid volunteer’s that currently includes six Ph.D.s and a Y-DNA Project administrator. We do however have operating cost. We would welcome your financial support. Send a tax-deductible check to Barnes-Oxford Foundation, 1240 Taylorsville Road, SE, Lenoir, NC 28645-8312. We are currently experiencing difficulty with the PayPal system which accepts PayPal and five credit card. If you prefer to pay in this manner leave a message by clicking on

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New Documents are coming soon:
Through an agreement with Rubenstein Library at Duke University, we will soon have facsimiles of The Benjamin Austin and Henry Reid Papers. The papers cover the period between 1756-1879 and consist of 625 items. They include correspondence and other papers of Austin and Henry Reid, both of whom served as Justices of the Peace.
Before 1868, Justices of the Peace were among the most important county officials in North Carolina. They sat as judges of the County Courts, governed the counties, nominated or appointed other county officials and exercised wide administrative and judicial power. The papers consist of legal papers, court records, tax lists, militia rosters, election lists and returns. There are also personal letters from relatives in Georgia, Kentucky, and Indiana to the family in North Carolina. Topics include blacksmithing, farming and abolitionist sentiment in Indiana, and Burke County politics and government affairs of which Barnes’s played a part.
Most events are in what is now Alexander County but have been due to shifts in county lines have been at sometimes been Burke, Wilkes and possibly Caldwell Counties. We have seen excerpts from them and know there are references to members of Brinsley Barnes’s family members. This Barnes information is not currently available in any public record. I will travel from Lenoir, NC to Durham to complete the task of scanning. Currently to see the papers requires a two-week notice to the library and few people have had access to them. We were able to find the following from others who have. They cite these two examples:

On 8 February 1794, a group of Burke County residents subscribed for a new school and donated money for it. The following signed the subscription and donated the sums indicated:30
William AUSTIN £ 11 0 0
Benjamin AUSTIN 3 0 0
Edward TEAGUE 2 0 0
Robert PAIN [PAYNE] 1 10 0
Abraham HUNSUCKER 1 15 0
Jehu BARNES 1 15 0
Philip AUSTIN 1 15 0

And at the October 1808 session of the Burke County Court Phillip AUSTIN proved in open Court a deed from David SPRADLING to Jehu BARNES, dated 23 October 1807.54
In the above examples, Jehu T. is the son of James “Handsome Jim” and grandson of Brinsley. Edward Teague is his father-in-law and is related to some of us as well.
Much of this information is not available on or FamilySearch. They will provide a significant for researchers of our area. Perkins has rigid guidelines on their requirement for citing from the papers. We will make them available when information is uploaded.

We have reached an agreement to scan and add to the website another collection of old documents dating into the 1770’s and after the Civil War.  The Isaac Forester Collection of Historical Papers  – link is another set of papers concerning the William Lenoir Family. They begin in 1769 and extend through WWII. Their contents are reviewed in a 73-page document in the Foothills and North Carolina History section of the website.  Ike Forrester a North Wilkesboro, NC CPA is the owner of what we are calling the collection.   It currently consists of over 5,000 documents. The papers are different from those in the Southern Historical Collection at UNC. The Index to those papers and microfilm access to them is in limited locations and is addressed elsewhere on this website. None of these items have been available to the public in the past. Scanning will take place over an extended period.

Connie McGee has joined our team and will be providing articles on an occasional basis on descendants of Solomon Barnes. The first of these on her grandfather Claude Richard Barnes appears in this update to the website. See her biography by clicking on her name above.

Coming Articles:
* The Lineage of Former Georgia Governor Roy E. Barnes to Brinsley, Sr. has been researched and written by Foundation Vice-President Lauren Barnes-Collier and will be published soon.
* The History of Kingsbury’s Artillery a Revolutionary War Unit in which Deaf John Barnes was a member will be discussed in detail. Research is currently being done by Lauren Barnes-Collier and Hugh Barnes. Publication is planned for next year.
* The Many Faces of Jehu Barnes is in the preliminary stages of development. At last count, we have identified nine all descendant from various branches of Brinsley’s family. We can provide a great deal of rough source data but would welcome someone completing the research and writing the article. Release date – undetermined.
* A Biography of Peter Barnes. Peter (3 Feb 1784 in Sugar Loaf Township, Alexander, North Carolina – 2 Dec 1865 in Alexander, North Carolina) Peter was a son of Solomon, Sr. He served as an Alexander County Justice of the Peace and was an important figure in county history. The article will be written by a new but regular contributor Connie McGee with research assistance by Dr. Chris Barnes of Georgia Tech and a member of the Foundation Board. Peter’s was his 3rd great-grandfather.
* Dr. Ted Sherrill, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church Georgetown, SC will author an article on The Importance of the Influence of Christianity in the Barnes, Oxford, Blair and Sherrill families. The article will begin with Brinsley Barnes baptism into the Church of Ireland in 1713 and then followed by his wife Elizabeth being disowned (kicked out of her Quaker Church for “Drinking Hard Liquor.” The article will contain many original source documents and will discuss family member’s service as ministers, charter members, deacons and clerks of various early and present-day churches. Reverend Sherrill is extremely busy. He spends one month each year in India teaching other ministers. We can provide guidance in where to go and what to look for, but we need help in finding the old document on Ancestry or Ancestry is free at many public libraries. FamilySearch, an arm of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons), is free. Ted is the grandson of Bessie Hill Oxford Sherrill. He is the 4th great-grandson of immigrant Brinsley Barnes, Sr. through “Handsome Jim” and the 5th great-grandson of immigrant John Oxford and he also descends from Adam Sherrill the first white man to settle on the west bank of the Catawba River.
* John LaRue descends from Brinsley II.  John does not consider himself a genealogist but rather a Family Historian. Link for more on John.  This will change with the new website since John is a regular contributor.  John contributed a short but well thought out article on the complicated matters surrounding the settling of Brinsley, Sr. Estate.  He has agreed to contribute an article on one of our more interesting family members William Taylor Barnes, born 14 Dec 1829 in Howard, Missouri, died 29 Feb 1892 in Dixie, Walla Walla, Washington.  Another article by John MAY BE POSSIBLE.  To complete each of these articles, John COULD POSSIBLY benefit from a research assistant.  He can direct you where to go, but you need to gather documents from Ancestry and FamilySearch.  You will be given credit for your contributions.

Foundation Vice President for Information Technology Julie Cleary has been busy with her genealogy research in addition to website enhancement. She descends from Brinsley. > James (Handsome Jim) > Jehu > Michael. Michael > and James David, Barnes. A publication date has not been determined, but she will author an article. Previous reports on Michael indicated he died of lockjaw after having migrated to California. Julie has proven this is untrue and he lived to the age of 74 and is buried in Sonoma alongside his wife, Elizabeth West. Along the way she discovered and has photographs of some of his colorful grandchildren: including James David who was a member of the California Mountaineers a branch of the Union army and was killed in an Indian raid. She has also found a photo that includes his brothers Thomas Langley “Lang,” MD, The Reverend Jehu and William “Will the Gambler.”
Foundation Vice-President Lauren Barnes-Collier continues to unearth new family information about Handsome Jim. She is also conducting research for the Kingsbury’s Artillery Unit article while assisting some with their DNA research.

With this issue, we will be starting a new service to assist family members with unique problems. In this issue, we feature Pamela Barnes. We hope you can assist her, here is her story:

Hi, my name is Pam Barnes (Barnes is my maiden name). My father, Kenneth Dewayne Barnes, was born in Humphries, Oklahoma April 1941. His mother Pearlene Neel claims to have married a man named Gary Dewayne Barnes somewhere around Altus, OK back in 1940 and they had one child, my father. However, I cannot find any record of her marriage in any county surrounding Altus, OK. She said she may have been “tricked” but that she did, in fact, have a marriage ceremony by a minister that Gary chose. Perhaps the paperwork was never filed, but I have no official record.

She met Gary in Altus and said she remembered a Canadian maple leaf patch on his uniform and the name Barnes, and he was stationed at Altus Airfield. I contacted Canada military and they have no Gary Barnes in their service anytime around that decade. So, I have no clue if she just made up the name or perhaps he really did exist as Gary Dewayne Barnes.

She has passed away, as has my father, and no one in the family has any information. Until her dying day, she swore to the info she gave me. My uncle (my dad’s half-brother) said that she hired an investigator to find Gary (he left before my dad was born, perhaps he never knew he was a father) and that the investigator tracked down Gary’s sister down near Corpus Christi, the sister claimed Gary died in a car accident. But I don’t know her name, nor the date Gary passed. I’m hoping that my DNA will find a match on his side so I finally figure out who my paternal grandfather was.

If you have any information or know of a relative named Gary Dewayne Barnes who would have been born sometime in the 1920’s and was in Altus Oklahoma, please email me at Thank you SO much.


Helping Our African-American Cousins:
Our African American cousins experience unique problems that most of us do not encounter. Their lineage is based on miscegenation. During the three years since I’ve had my DNA tested, I have had contact from three African-American cousins who shared Barnes DNA. One of these was a woman who became so disgusted that she considered what happened rape and she has given up genealogy research. I’m now working with a gentleman who I hope you and others will help him and other African Americans who shares Barnes DNA. Surprisingly he has been able to identify his 3rd great-grandfather Elijah Barnes born in 1818 in, Wilkes County North Carolina as a slave. He found him in the 1880 census in the Beaver Creek Township in Wilkes County. Surprisingly, he was living adjacent to my great-grandfather Solomon D. Barnes.  To help him I figured that the best was an organized approach and look at all the Barnes’s who had at one time owned slaves.

I did this using early Census records, and there were not many who did own slaves. The list is as follows:
Jehu, son of Brinsley – 1
Deaf John (Total 6 according to his Will as follows)
1 female to wife Ruth for her lifetime and then to son Thomas
Son Brinsley 1 female & 1 adult male and 1 boy
Son Edward 1 boy
John, Jr. 1 girl

Many of you who descend from these individuals who have DNA tested have already shared your GEDmatch ID. If you have not let us hear from you.

Linda Kimberling has provided the following list of Barnes from 1790 Kentucky Census records.  Double-click to enlarge the image

Kentucky 1790 Barnes's

This will be moved to a more appropriate location when the new website becomes available.

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Dr. Robert L. “Bob” McNeely has just left Parke County, Indiana and had also been to Lawrence and Vigo Counties. He has been searching for information on his 3rd great grandfather James “Handsome” Jim Barnes. He reports the following: It will take me a long time to digest all the things I have about Barnes in Indiana, but let me mention several interesting things that are currently on my mind.

1. I can find no additional information about Handsome Jim Barnes.  The Parke County courthouse with all the deed, tax records, and court records burned in 1832.  The only surviving records are original grants and census records.  Handsome Jim does not match any of the four James Barnes households in the census records.  He does seem to match somewhat one of the several James Barnes land grants but there are a number of James Barnes land grants in Parke County at that time.

2. By far, most of the Barnes in Parke County are descended from the several Barnes families that migrated here from Mercer County KY.  This is not our line of Barnes, but surprisingly we are distantly related to them through marriages back in Mercer County.

3. The Barnes, Swaim, and Teague families are reported to have traveled together from Wilkes County NC by wagon across Ohio to get to this newly opened corn-belt Indian county in Indiana. There are very many Swaims and Teagues who still reside in Parke County from the original Wilkes County groups. The Parke County library is full of Barnes, Swaim, and Teague records.

4. There is a wonderful book, “That Swaim Family 1663-1961” by John E. Swaim.  This author in the late 1800s interviewed the surviving children and grandchildren of Michael Swaim and Elizabeth Barnes (daughter of Handsome Jim) and recorded many things about the family in Wilkes and then in Parke Co Indiana. He reports about the travel across Ohio by wagon to get to Indiana.  He reports about the problems at first arrival in Indiana, the building of a temporary shelter and the building of the first log cabin.  And he gives details about all their children. The author adds sketches about the family.

Elizabeth Barnes Swaim
Elizabeth Barnes Swaim

I attach his sketch of Elizabeth Barnes at the original temporary shelter as described by one of Elizabeth’s children. The land and homestead of Michael was visited but the Michael Swaim tombstone erected by his son Jehu Barnes Swaim has not been found.  Elizabeth died later and is buried in the Rockville town cemetery.

Editor’s note: I have made several unsuccessful attempts to work remotely with the Library. Hopefully using his report, we can identify other family located there to help. Find A Grave list 4,244 memorials but only 41% have been photographed. Elizabeth’s memorial is listed but has no tombstone photograph. Find A Grave list her death date as 25 Aug 1836. The Parke County, Indiana GenWeb Cemetery Index for Rockville Cemetery states her death date was Nov 16, 1836.

We are working with DNA more. We recommend using DNAPainter to assist you. They have a good Facebook help group as well.

While working on, I have had the pleasure to work with Eric Daly. Eric is one the most gifted genealogist I have ever encountered. Although he lives in the UK, he has somehow managed to provide information on many of our early Barnes ancestors. When our database is up, we will be sharing more of this with you.

Wikitree, unlike most genealogy sites, sets a higher standard of proof for information. Brinsley and Solomon Barnes and John Oxford are all considered important individuals. Wikitree leadership did not feel that sufficient documentation existed to prove who Brinsley’s children were and ask a group known as his Trusted List and provide documentation. Some of those members are Hugh Barnes, Lauren Barnes-Collier and Michael Barnes. John LaRue was recently added to the group. With the addition of John, the issue of whether Elizabeth Barnes was a Lindley is also being reviewed. Using Quaker records, we have determined that Anne Barnes Hobson and Mary Barnes Carter are children. We will next use four Wilkes County Court of Common Pleas cases to confirm Jehu, John, and Brinsley II. Any assistance you can provide with others will be appreciated. It is our belief that Lydia Barnes, James Barnes and, Thomas Barnes, and Lydia Barnes Teague are also children. At one time, it was believed that Solomon, Sr., Leonard, and Rachel were but these latter three are not supported. Some would like to think that Solomon is but DNA now clearly proves this is not the case. We would welcome your assistance with this task. Join to monitor our progress or update your tree.

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