22 JAN 1852 - Accomack, VA
27 JAN 1921 - Coles Point, Westmoreland, VA
Edward Parker BarnesEdward Barnes >> Eddie Barnes >> Thelma Barnes >> Frances Franklin >> Mark Dameron
Edward was a farmer and sailor from Accomack County. He moved his family across the Bay to open a general store in Coles Point, where he was also the first post master.
Edward first appears in the 1860 census in Accomack Parish, Accomack County, serviced by the Metompkin Post Office. His father’s occupation is given as sailing, with real estate valued at $1,700. Other common area occupations are oystering and farming. Children listed include William J., John C., Edward P., Mary E., Virginia, Isaiah F., & Arinthia. Also a woman named Elizabeth Lewis lives with the family, she is 21, white and cannot read or write.
The 1870 census places Edward Parker Barnes in the Metompkin township of Accomack County, serviced by the Modest Town Post Office. Edward is 18 and his occupation is given as a farm laborer. His father is still listed as a sailor as are his two older brothers. His mother, Sallie, is noted as not being able to read or write. A 23 year old white male named Middleton Revel or Revere is also listed as living with them, his occupation is as a sailor too.
On December 20th, 1876 Edward married Susan Anna Barnes, daughter of James Barnes and Emmaline Thomas. It appears the couple were second cousins, with John Barnes (1750-1799) and Elizabeth T. Jacob (1750-1815) as common ancestors. The wedding was performed by Rev. Franklin H. Mullineaux, a Methodist Minister.
A daughter, Lewella May, was born in 1877, she died at the age of 9 months as a result of the whooping cough. Her death was reported to the Accomack County Death Register by an uncle, Noah Parkes. Another daughter Effie Lee was born in 1879.
The 1880 census shows the family living still in Accomack County, the locality is given as Enumeration District 7. Edward is noted as a sailor, Susan is noted as being unable to read or write. The next official record I have found is the 1900 census that shows the family has crossed the Chesapeake Bay and lives in Westmoreland.
The following information was provided by Susan Godman Rager, great granddaughter of Edward Parker Barnes:
When working in the waters across the Bay, the water-men of the village of Hunting Creek were finding it difficult to purchase items on the western side of the Bay required in their line of work. It was suggested to Edward that it would be profitable if someone from their community could open a store on the western shore, to provide provisions for the local water-men. This, he decided to do.
Around 1882-1883, Edward and his wife, Susan Anna, with daughter, Effie, and son, James Edward, left Accomack County, crossed the Bay, and re-settled in Westmoreland County. Daughter Effie remembered her crossing of the Bay, later telling her granddaughter, Susan Godman, "The boat we came across in was a black two masted schooner". She believed it belonged to her uncle, Columbus "Lum" Justice. Edward established his business at Coles Point.
The first place they lived was in an old home in Kinsale, known in that area as "Federal Hill." Federal Hill was built in 1836 by Robert Bailey who acquired the land from Presley P. Cox. Although in a state in deterioration, the house still stands. Later Edward and his family moved to Coles Point, into a big house, situated on Lower Machodoc Creek, near the mouth of Branson’s cove. There, Edward and his wife, Susan Anna, lived out the rest of their lives.
Westmoreland Chancery Court documents from 1886 show the Edward brought suit against James F. Evans for $83 plus interest that was due on his account. Presumably this was an account at Edward's store. The surviving documents to not make clear if the debt was ever settled.
Around 1887, Edward and his friend, Frank M. Thrift, while fishing together one day, discussed the need for a church in Coles Point. They decided to start collecting funds to build one. Edward coaxed his merchant friends in Baltimore to help with money for lumber, and other building materials. Other local merchants provided the land on which to build the church. The church was completed in 1891.
Edward became the first Postmaster of Coles Point, a position he held the remainder of his life. There is a metal stamp in existence for this Post Office which shows the date Oct. 21, 1889.
The church Edward helped open was called Coles Point Methodist Church. The building burnt down in 2008 and was rebuilt. Presently they share a pastor with Carmel Church near Kinsale.
The 1900 census shows the family living in the Cople district of Westmoreland. Edward is listed as a farmer, owning his home mortgage free. Susan is noted as having given birth to five children, with three still being alive - Effie, Eddie and Arthur. Eddie is listed as day laborer. I have been unable to find a record for the fifth child that died at a young age. Additionally a 22 year old white male named Daniel Davis lives with them. His relationship is listed a servant, and his occupation is given as farm laborer. A 1907 clipping in the Northern Neck News mentioned that Edward had just finished building a new home on his land for George Davis, who would be working the farm.
The 1910 census shows the family still in the Cople district. Edward’s occupation is given as a Retail Merchant in a general store. Susan is indicated as being able to read and write on this census.
A 1917 mention in the Northern Neck News stated the Edward was retiring from the mercantile business after 36 years. He sold his store to G.W. Godman, his son-in-law. Edward and Susan appear on the 1920 census again in the Cople district. Both of their occupations are listed as none. Their children Effie and Eddie appear on the same census page with their families. Effie’s husband, George Godman, is now shown to be running the store. Eddie is listed as Sailor, as are many of the other men on the census page. Later in 1920 Edward was named to the Board of Directors for The Farmers Bank of Hague.
Edward passed away on January 27th, 1921. His cause of death was given as acute myocarditis (inflammation of the middle layer of the heart wall, usually caused by a viral infection). He was buried at Carmel Methodist Church the next day. His Church at Coles Point does not appear to have had a cemetery. Edward's headstone reads “CAPT EDWARD P. BARNES.”
- Year: 1860; Census Place: Accomack Parish, Accomack, Virginia; Roll: M653_1330; Page: 52; Image: 59; Family History Library Film: 805330
- Year: 1870; Census Place: Metompkin, Accomack, Virginia; Roll: M593_1630; Page: 142B; Image: 263268; Family History Library Film: 553129
- Year: 1880; Census Place: Accomack, Virginia; Roll: 1351; Family History Film: 1255351; Page: 195D; Enumeration District: 007
- Year: 1900; Census Place: Cople, Westmoreland, Virginia; Roll: 1731; Page: 15B; Enumeration District: 0083; FHL microfilm: 1241731
- Year: 1910; Census Place: Cople, Westmoreland, Virginia; Roll: T624_1651; Page: 11B; Enumeration District: 0121; FHL microfilm: 1375664
- Year: 1920; Census Place: Cople, Westmoreland, Virginia; Roll: T625_1918; Page: 1A; Enumeration District: 156; Image: 53
- U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current
- Virginia, Death Records, 1912-2014
- Virginia, Select Marriages, 1785-1940
- 1876 Marriage - "Accomack, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9ZG-Q54X : January 16, 2021), image 573 of 805; Accomack County (Virginia). County Clerk.
Spouse & Children:
- William J. Barnes
- John Columbus Barnes
- Mary Elizabeth Barnes
- Virginia S. Barnes
- Isaiah Tully Barnes
- Unnamed Barnes
- Arinthia C. L. Barnes
- Sarah Ann Rebecca Barnes