When I started researching my husband’s Barnes line, I knew they had Wayne County, North Carolina roots. My husband’s father and his Aunt Helen had told me that their father, Ernest Barnes, had been born in the Goldsboro area in 1885, and that the family had lived in Grantham Township. It took lots of research to find out that his grandfather’s grandmother was Nancy Ann Musgrave Barnes (1837-1921). The Barnes surname is a very common one in North Carolina, and there are many different lines in Wayne County!
This year I have been trying to find out my about both mine, and my husband’s, grandparents grandparents. From focusing on these specific generations in our family tree I’ve been having very good results and learning more about the history of our families.
Nancy Ann Musgrave married Jacob H. Barnes on 18 May 1854 in Wayne County, NC. She was the daughter of Tobias and Apsilla Whitley Musgrave. After her father’s death in 1848, her mother married John T. Toler, of Wayne County, NC. From searching this month in the “North Carlina Estate Files, 1663-1979” I’ve finally found out that Nancy Ann’s father died on 1 January 1848 in Wayne County, when he was 42 years old, and she was 10 years old. The estate files gives many pages of details about the guardians appointed for Nancy Ann and her brothers, William and Needham, and the settling of Tobias’ estate.
Here is a note I saved from when I was trying to unravel the Barnes family tree.
Oct. 2004 – I’m not sure if Nancy Ann Musgrave is the mother of Thomas W. Barnes, but I’m entering her because the information seems to fit. On his marriage application he stated his father was J. Barnes – dead, and his mother is N. Barnes – living of Wayne County, NC. He gives his age as 23, and he would be turning 24 in April of that year if he was born in 1860. From the 1870 Federal Census for Wayne County. Grantham Township, there is a Thos. W. Barnes, age 10, living with his mother N. A. Barnes age 32, and sisters Emma – 15, Alice – 13. In the 1880 Federal Census, Wayne County, Brodgen District, there is a T. W. Barnes age 20. living with his mother N. A. Barnes age 42. Also, in the 1900 Federal Census for Wayne County there no longer is a Thomas W. Barnes, and Bessie Pauline Barnes seems to be listed twice; once with her mother Ophelia in Grantham Township, and earlier that month with Musgrave relatives in Goldsboro Township. [Yes, this is the right family. – Maryann Barnes].
Nancy Ann Musgrave’s husband, Jacob H. Barnes, died at age 36, after being wounded and captured during the Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War. He died at Fort Delaware during a measles outbreak, while being held as a prisoner of war by the Union side. She never remarried. Nancy Ann Musgrave Barnes is buried at the Willowdale Cemetery in Goldsboro, Wayne County, NC.
Below is where I found the copy of the marriage record at the top of this post. All of the records at FamilySearch are free, so take a look and try to find something new about your ancestry. Good luck researching your family and unraveling your lineage!