Christmas Eve

She was going towards Tip when she was shot.


Wilson Daily Times, 30 December 1921.

Ernest Barnes, 21, son of George and Emma Barnes of Wilson, married Enda Austin, 19, daughter of Eph and Alice Austin of Wilson on 22 December 1909. Holiness minister LeRoy Wiggins performed the ceremony at the residence of Tob. Barnes in the presence of Ed McCullers, Sam Austin, and Tob. Barnes.

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 488 Walnut Street, Ernest Barnes, 23, factory laborer, wife Enda, 19, son Frank, 3, and lodger John Jackson, 52, a factory laborer.

India Alston Barnes died Christmas Eve 1921 as the result of a pistol shot to the right cheek. Dr. Frank S. Hargrave, quoted above, certified her death.


Tip Barnes was indicted in India Barnes’ homicide two months later.


Wilson Daily Times, 10 February 1922.

Barnes was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 10-15 years.

The Western Sentinel (Winston-Salem, N.C.), 28 April 1922.

He didn’t serve long. He was paroled in 1926 and, on 28 December 1926, Tip Barnes, 37, married Mable Polka Scott, 23, in Wilson.

However, around New Year’s Day of 1928, Barnes was caught up in a police raid in Washington, D.C. He had his parole papers in his pocket, making it a simple matter for police to determine that he was in violation. He was returned to prison.

News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.), 4 January 1928.

Barnes returned to jail, but escaped eight months later.

Asheville Citizen-TImes, 11 September 1928.

Just two years later, despite a decided lack of “an excellent prison record,” Barnes was paroled again.

News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.), 27 November 1930.

Earnest Tipp Barnes died 1 November 1952 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 20 January 1888 in South Carolina to George Barnes and Emma McGowan. He was a laborer, was married, and resided at 400 East Hines Street. Mable Barnes of that address was informant.