Barnes

State vs. Jeffrey Simms.

To stave off responsibility for caring for poor women and their children, unwed mothers were regularly brought before justices of the peace to answer sharp questions about their circumstances.

On 11 December 1866, Rebecca Barnes admitted to Wilson County justice of the peace Washington Barnes that she had given birth to a child whose father was Jeffrey Simms. Barnes ordered that Simms be arrested and taken to a justice to answer Barnes’ charge.

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In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 22, and an unnamed one month-old infant, plus Bryant Simms, 80.

Bastardy Bonds, 1866, Miscellaneous Records, Wilson County Records, North Carolina State Archives.

Daily Times paperboys, no. 4.

  • Benjamin Hines

Wilson Daily Times, 5 October 1950.

  • Therman G. Barnes

Wilson Daily Times, 7 October 1950.

In the 1950 census of Wilson, Wilson County: cook Maggie L. Ward, 38; cook Ida Mae, 35; sister Annie, 20, maid; sister Addie, 15; brother Vertice B., 14; nephew Thurman Barnes, 14; and nieces Mable Barnes, 18, and Patricia A. Ward, 1.

  • V. Bruce Ward

Wilson Daily Times, 7 October 1950.

Vertice Bruce Ward was the uncle of Therman G. Barnes, above.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

W.H. Barnes is called for jury duty.

Wilson Daily Times, 29 August 1935.

In 1935, William H. Barnes‘ selection for jury duty made the news after county commissioners determined that “negroes were to be included in the jury lists of the County.” 

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In the 1880 census of Sauls Crossroads, Wayne County: farmer Samuel Barnes, 37; wife Jane, 34; and children Robert, 14, Frances, 11, Ora, 9, Bettey, 6, William, 2, and Annie, 1.

In the 1910 census of Nahunta township, Wayne County: widower William H. Barnes, 33, farmer.

In the 1930 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer W.H. Barnes, 52; wife Minnie, 46; and children Dida, 23, Johnie, 21, and Willie V., 19.

In the 1940 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer W.H. Barnes, 62; wife Minnie, 54; children Dottie, 35, Verona, 30, and Jane, 10; and grandson John Lee, 3.

William H. Barnes died 10 November 1944 in Black Creek township, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was born 4 October 1877 in Wayne County to Samuel Barnes of Wayne County and Jane [maiden name unknown] of Georgia; was the widower of Minnie Barnes; was engaged in farming; and was buried at Turner Swamp, Wayne County. Dedie Barnes Reid was informant.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Barnes-Edwards family portrait.

The family of Lee John Edwards, circa mid-1940s.

This lovely colorized photograph depicts three generations of Lee John Edwards‘ family and dates to the mid-1940s. Edwards stands on the porch beside his second wife, Maggie Speight Edwards. who is holding baby John Henry Edwards. Lee Edwards’ daughter Elizabeth Edwards Barnes sits at right, her husband Frank W. Barnes stands at left, and her stepson Frank W. Barnes Jr. stands on the steps beside his young uncle, A.J. Edwards. On the bottom step are Marvin, Hattie Mae, and S.T. Edwards. Willie Edwards stands behind his sister Elizabeth.

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On 21 January 1912, Lee John Edwards, 21, of Greene County, son of Elizabeth Edwards, married Almira Rowe, 18, of Greene County, daughter of Julus and Sarah Rowe, in Bullhead township, Greene County, North Carolina.

Lee John Edwards, 21, registered for the World War I draft in Greene County in 1917. Per his registration card, he was born April 1896 in Greene County; was a farmer; and was single.

On 8 February 1920, Lee J. Edwards, 24, of Saratoga, son of Isaac and Elizabeth Edwards, married Tessie Ward, 19, of Saratoga, daughter of Dug and Sallie Ward, in Wilson County.

In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: farmer Lee J. Edwards, 24; wife Tessie, 19; and son Lee, 16 months.

Lee McKinley Edwards died 12 November 1925 in Saratoga, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was born in June 1919 to Lee Edwards and Tessie Ward.

Lee John Edwards Jr. died 30 May 1928 in Saratoga, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was born 10 May 1928 to Lee Edwards and Tessie Ward.

In the 1930 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: Lee Edwards, 34; wife Tessie, 28; and children Elizabeth, 8, Tinsie, 7, and Eddie, 9 months.

In the 1940 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farm laborer Lee Edwards, 46; wife Maggie, 25; and children A.J., 4, Elizabeth, 19, Marie, 18, Eddie, 11, and Willie, 8.

In the 1950 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farm operator Lee J. Edwards, 54; wife Maggy, 39; and children Eddy H., 20, Willy J., 19, A.J., 15, Marvin Lee, 12, S.T., 10, Haddy May, 8, John Henry, 5, and Isaac Lee, 2.

Lee John Edwards, 65, of Black Creek, married Maggie Speight, 40, on 10 July 1959 in Wilson County.

Lee John Edwards died 24 July 1959 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 30 July 1894 in Greene County; was married to Maggie Edwards; resided at Route 3, Wilson; and was engaged in farming. A.J. Edwards was informant.

Wilson Daily Times, 10 August 1959.

Photo courtesy of Christopher Frazier and Dr. Michael Barnes — thank you for sharing!; World War I Service Cards, 1917-1919, online at http://www.ancestry.com.

The last will and testament of Annie Gunn.

Annie Gunn‘s will, drafted three years before she died in 1919, reveals unusual wealth and interesting family dynamics.

To her husband Daniel Gunn, Annie Gunn bequeathed the use and enjoyment of a room in their house (clearly, her house) on Lodge Street, specifically, the room next to the adjoining grocery store. Daniel Gunn was to live in the room, not rent it, and if he did not want to live there, the provision was moot. Annie Gunn also left her husband an interest in the store building for the duration of his lifetime, as long as he paid taxes, insurance, and made necessary repairs. Last, Daniel Gunn was to receive all his wife’s “wearing apparel” and her kitchen and household furnishings, except her clock, “machine,” and piano. Anything he didn’t want, he could “distribute among [her] own people as he may deem best.”

To nephew Thomas Deans, Gunn bequeathed her house at 514 South Lodge Street, the adjoining store, the piano, and the clock.

514 and 512 [now 510] South Lodge Street, with the grocery store between them, as drawn in the 1913 Sanborn fire insurance map of Wilson. (Is the small building behind the grocery the “room” bequeathed to Daniel Gunn?)

To Claudia Wooten, Gunn bequeathed a life interest in the house and lot at what is now 510 South Lodge and a sewing machine. At Wooten’s death, the house was to be sold to pay off debts, expenses, and inheritance taxes and to pay out these bequests:

  • to friend Mrs. Vene Davis, Greenville, N.C., $100
  • to Davis’ daughter, Mrs. Lourine Skinner, Greenville, N.C., $100
  • to friend Mrs. Minnie Cobb, wife of John Cobb, $50
  • to nephew Henry Battle, $50
  • to Charles Barnes, $50
  • to niece Fatina Battle, $50
  • to brother Isaac Matthews, $50
  • to Clara Ann Viverett, Bryant Winstead, and Ned Winstead, her sister’s children, $50
  • to Cora Gunn, $50
  • to Braswell Winstead, $50
  • to trustees of A.M.E. Zion Church of Wilson, $50
  • to Belle Holden, $50

Almost twenty years after Annie Gunn died, the house she left Claudia Wooten went up for auction. The notice of sale mentioned that the lot was a portion of the land Gunn (then Barnes) had purchased in 1897.

Wilson Daily Times, 1 June 1938.

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  • Annie Gunn

On 17 September 1895, Geo. Bynum, 40, of Wilson, son of Amos Pitt and Lucy Bynum, married Annie Barnes, 35, of Wilson, at Fan[?] Johnson’s residence. A.M.E.Z. minister L.B. Williams performed the ceremony in the presence of Berry Bynum, Ella Allen, and Howell G. Bynum.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: widow Annie Bynum, 40; Maggie Eanox, 24, widow, her children Addie M., 9, and Joseph Eanox, 7, and sister Bertie Eanox, 17; and boarder Mary Corbett, 24.

On 22 May 1901, Daniel Gunn, 40, of Wilson County, son of Ruffin and Lizzie Gunn, married Annie A. Bynum, 42, of Wilson County, at her residence in Wilson. Free Will Baptist minister Crocket Best performed the ceremony in the presence of Cora Beckwith, Mary Thorne, and Debsel [Delzelle] Beckwith. [The Beckwiths were Annie Gunn’s next-door neighbors.]

In the 1908 and 1912 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directories: Gunn Anna (c) clothing h 514 S Lodge

Annie Gunn died 30 January 1919 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she lived at 514 Lodge Street; was 68 years old; was born in Nash County, N.C., to “Dr. Shaw, white” and an unknown mother; and was married to Daniel Gunn.

  • Daniel Gunn

In the 1908 and 1912 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directories: Gunn Daniel (c) grocer 512 1/2 S Lodge h 514 S Lodge

In the 1916 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Gunn Daniel (c) lab h 514 S Lodge

In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 514 Lodge Street, school principal James T. Deans, 53, wife Mary, 34, and children Rosevelt, 16, James Jr., 9, Walter, 5, Therodore, 3, and Dixie, 2 months, and boarder Daniel Gunn, 57, a tobacco factory worker.

In the 1922 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Gunn Daniel tob grader 512 S Lodge h 514 S Lodge

In the 1928 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Gunn Daniel (c) lab h 514 S Lodge

Daniel Gunn died 25 May 1929 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was 68 years old; was a widower; was born in Danville, Virginia; lived at 514 Lodge Street; and worked as a tobacconist (grading). Addie E. Hall was informant.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: widow Clauda Wooten, 37, son Sidney, 18, farm laborer, and brother Irdel, 35, day laborer.

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Goldsboro Street, widow Clauda Wooten, 47, laundress, and son Sim, 28, wagon factory laborer.

In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 512 South Lodge, Claudie Wooten, 57, widow, and son Sim, 37, wagon factory laborer.

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 510 South Lodge, owned and valued at $1000, widow Claudia Wooten, 67, and son Sim, 48, widower, carpenter at Hackney Wagon.

Claudia Wooten died 9 August 1935 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was 73 years old; was born in Nash County to Henry Shaw and Jane Shaw; was a widow; and lived at 510 Lodge Street. Informant was Sim Wooten, 510 Lodge.

  • Vene Davis and Lourine Skinner

Lavenia Blount Davis (1854-1942) and her daughter Laurine Davis Skinner (1881-1959) were Wilson natives. That they were white is signaled by the inclusion of an honorific before their names. I do not know Annie Gunn’s relationship to them or why she would leave them such large sums of money.

  • Minnie Cobb — Minnie Warren Cobb (1884-1964), either.
  • Henry Battle
  • Charles Barnes
  • Fatina Battle
  • Isaac Matthews

In the 1870 census of Chesterfield township, Nash County, North Carolina: Clara Matthews, 55, and son Isaac, 19, farm laborer.

On 12 April 1871, Isaac Matthews, son of Stephen Powell and C. Mathews, married Sidney Powell, daughter of Calvin Powell and Penny Lucus, in Wilson County.

In the 1880 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: in the household of white farmer Mark M. Matthews, 40, hirelings Charly G. Howard, 24, Isaac Matthews, 28, George Locust, 50, and Calvin Powell, 50, and his son Thomas, 14.

  • Clara Ann Viverett —

In the 1870 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: d[omestic] servant Anna Oats, 28; Milly Winsted, 16, d[omestic] servant, Ned Winsted, 13, farm laborer, and Clara Winsted, 12, d[omestic] servant; and John Batts, 22, white, liquor dealer.

Henry Viverett, 42, of Toisnot township, Wilson County, married Clara Winstead, 30, of Toisnot township, on 19 March 1896.

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: farmer Henry Vivrett, 47; wife Clory, 34; and children Isabella, 18, Arthur, 14, Willie, 10, Ella, 6, Victora, 3, and Henry, 1.

In the 1910 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: Henry Viverett, 56; wife Clara, 46; and children Ella, 17, Victoria, 13, Henry, 10, and Troy, 5.

In the 1920 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: farmer Henry Virrett, 55; wife Clara, 53; and son Willie, 15.

  • Bryant Winstead

In the 1870 census of Joyners township, Wilson County: Bryant Winsted, 18, Jack Hardy, 22, and Matilda Hardy, 20, all farm laborers.

In the 1880 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: farmer Bryant Winstead, 30; wide Blessing, 28; grandmother Millie Batchelor, 83; and niece Ellen Heggins, 12.

In the 1900 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: farmer Bryant Winstead, 49, and wife Blessing, 45.

In the 1910 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: tenant farmer Bryant Winstead, 54, and wife Blessing, 48.

In the 1930 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: farmer Bryant Winstead, 65, and wife Blessing, 65.

Bryant Winstead died 2 October 1933 in Elm City, Toisnot township, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was

James H. Holden, 35, of Wilson, son of Rachel Holden, married Isabell Deans, 25, on 25 January 1900 in Wilson. Baptist minister Fred M. Davis performed the ceremony in the presence of J.T. Deans, Cora Beckwith and Goodsey Holden.

N.B. Annie Barnes Bynum Gunn is not to be confused with Annie Barnes Gunn (1874-1973), whose husband was Moses Gunn.

I am not yet clear on Annie B.B. Gunn’s birth family. Her marriage licenses do not list her parents. Her death certificate lists only her father, a white physician named Shaw. Bryant, Clara, and Ned Winstead are described as Annie Gunn’s sister’s children; records name their mother variously as Iseley and Essie Winstead. (They had different fathers.) Claudia Wooten is not described as Annie Gunn’s relative, but her parents’ surnames are listed as Shaw on her death certificate. Braswell Winstead, son of Riley Robbins and Malissa Winstead, is not described as Annie Gunn’s relative, but have been. J. Thomas Deans, son of Sarah Deans, was described as her nephew. Isaac Matthews is described as her brother, but his mother was Clara Matthews. Henry and Fatina Battle are described as her nephew and niece.

The death of John Jenkins (alias Thomas Washington).

Wilson Daily Times, 3 July 1931.

According to this news account, Minerva Barnes slashed her brother-in-law John Jenkins across the forearm because he had slapped her sister. However, the dead man’s death certificate reports his name as Thomas Washington

Minerva Barnes’ charges were eventually upgraded to manslaughter, but she was acquitted in February 1932.

Wilson Daily Times, 10 February 1932.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Drowned boy shows up?

What in the world happened here?

These articles appear back-to-back in the same issue of the Daily Times, and I have not yet found further information to clear up the confusion.

An eight year-old boy named James Applewhite had been missing a week when 13 year-old Raymond Sheppard confessed to police that he had pushed the younger boy into Toisnot Creek, where he had drowned. The very next day, James Applewhite showed up the police department claiming that he had gotten lost on his way home from school — a doubtful claim in 1940s Wilson — and wound up on a farm between Lucama and the Dixie Inn. Police had begun to drain “the lake in Maplewood cemetery” [what lake? Toisnot reservoir? It’s a half-mile north of Maplewood]* when Wiley Barnes‘ wife brought him into town, having just heard about a missing boy. He had appeared at her family’s farm, she said, and had asked for work. To compound the confusion, Raymond Sheppard and other boys claimed this was not the boy who had drowned, though that boy was also named Applewhite.

An article by John G. Thomas, often the Times‘ local-color writer, but here somewhere between straight reporter and editorialist, immediately followed the one above. The focus of the piece leaps from place to place, but these asserted facts emerge: Raymond Sheppard threw rocks at two boys trying to save Applewhite, hindering their efforts; the police rounded up eight boys and parked them in jail while investigating; the year before, Sheppard and two other boys had been charged with beating a white man, who later died of his injuries, for thirty cents’ gain; two of the boys, John Sowers, 15, and Andrew Jackson, 13, had admitted to burning down a Black man’s store and throwing a railroad spike through a truck windshield; Sheppard, Sowers, and Jackson were free because there was no place to hold them (a situation remedied on the spot); Jesse Lee Barnes, 9, Paul Mitchell, 12, Mitchell Hargrove, 13, Roy Lee Barnes, 14, and James Hall, 15, were also arrested; William Roberts, apparently owner of the burned store, pleaded with county commissioners for more police protection in East Wilson; they punted him to the Board of Aldermen.

Wilson Daily Times, 3 April 1945.

*Update: Toisnot Reservoir didn’t exist in 1945, but there was a small pond in Maplewood Cemetery that has since been filled in. Thanks, Matthew Langston!

Ack-Ack.

Wilson Daily Times, 7 July 1944.

Wilson Daily Times, 23 June 1944.

We first met Willie Roscoe Barnes in this story about his years operating a dry-cleaning business after his return from distinguished service in an anti-aircraft Artillery Battalion.

Clippings courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

1020 East Hines Street.

The one hundred sixty-ninth in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District, this building is: “ca. 1922; 1 1/2 stories; William Barnes house; early local bungalow with gable roof and engaged porch; shingled dormer; Barnes was a laborer, chauffeur, and builder.”

The address of this house was 1020 Wainwright Avenue prior to the extension of Hines Street in the early 1970s.

In the 1928 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Barnes Wm (c; Julia) lab h 1018 [sic] Wainwright av [In the householders’ section of the directory, the house number is listed at 1020.]

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Barnes Wm (c; Julia) lab h 1020 Wainwright av

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1020 Wainwright, owned and valued at $900, William Barnes, 46, lumber mill laborer; wife Julia, 42; and children Evelyn, 13, Mary B., 11, and William Jr., 8.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1020 [Wainwright], William Barnes, 58, cotton mill engineer; wife Julia, 55; children Evylene, 25, beautician in beauty parlor, Mary, 19, and William, 17, shoeshine boy in shoe shop; and adopted daughter Nebraska, 11.

In the 1941 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Barnes Wm (c) lab h 1020 S Wainwright Av

On 27 April 1946, Clarence Hoskins, 22, of Wilson, son of Lonnie Hoskins and Gertrude Hines [sic] Hoskins, married Nebraska Barnes, 18, of 1020 Wainwright Avenue, Wilson, daughter of William Barnes and Julia Fields Barnes, in Wilson. Missionary Baptist minister H. Hoskins performed the ceremony in the presence of Azzel F. Hall, Joseph Zeigler Jr., and Agnes M. Hoskins.

In the 1947 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Barnes Wm M (c; Julia) mech Sou Oil Co h 1020 S Wainwright Av; also, Barnes Wm M jr (c) student h 1020 Wainwright

Photo by Lisa Y. Henderson, April 2022.

The obituary of Viola Barnes Bernard.

Wilson Daily Times, 10 July 1943.

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In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: teamster Wesley Barnes, 32; wife Ella, 35; and children Joseph, 14, Lucy, 11, Sylvester, 7, Viola, 5, and Charley, 3.

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Norfolk & Southern Railroad, drayman West Barnes, 44; wife Ella, 47, laundress; and children Sylvester, 17, drayman, Viola, 15, cook, and Charlie, 13, wholesale store laborer; plus son-in-law James Watson, 23, drayman, wife Lucy, 22, cook, and children West, 4, and Lucy, 3 months.

Charles Barnes died 2 May 1917 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 6 February 1915 in Wilson County to Bert Hagans and Viola Barnes. The informant was Ella Barnes.

Henry Gray Barnes died 26 April 1932 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was 21 years old; lived at 401 North Vick Street; worked as a common laborer; was born in Wilson County to Jessie Ball of Warsaw, N.C., and Viola Barnes of Wilson; and was married to Alice Barnes. Informant was Ella Barnes, 401 North Vick. Cause of death: “Taken about 1 A.M. complaining he could not get his breath died about 7 A.M. No physician investigated since no sign of foul play.”

In the 1938 Richmond, Virginia, city directory: (possibly) Barnes Viola (c) dom h 110 E Clay; also Bernard Oscar L (c) hlpr h 10 E Marshall

In the 1939 Richmond, Virginia, City directory: Bernard Oscar L (c; Viola) hlpr h 217 E Clay

In the 1940 census of Richmond, Virginia: at 319 Brook Road, Oscar Bernard, 28, baker at bakery, and wife Viola, 26, cook at restaurant. 

In the 1941 Richmond, Virginia, City directory: Bernard Oscar (c; Viola) cook h 319 1/2 Brook Rd

In the 1942 Richmond, Virginia, City directory: Bernard Oscar (c; Viola) baker Whites h 319 1/2 Brook Rd

In 1942, Oscar Lee Bernard registered for the World War II draft in Richmond, Virginia. Per his registration card, he was born 25 December 1898 in Suffolk, Virginia; lived at 319 1/2 Brook Road, Richmond; his contact was Viola Bernard; and he worked for Whites Cafeteria, 513 E Grace Street, Richmond.

Viola Barnes died 8 July 1943 at her home at 401 North Vick Street, Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was 39 years old; was born in Wilson County to West Barnes of Wilson County and Ella Mercer of Edgecombe County; was single; and was buried in Rountree [probably, Vick] Cemetery. Lucy Watson was informant. 

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.