Biography - Francis Barnwell

FRANCIS M. BARNWELL, merchant of Ozark, was born in Simpson Township, Johnson County, ILL., October 23, 1855, to John C. Barnwell, a native of North Carolina who was taken by his parents to Middle Tennessee when a small boy. His father was William Barnwell, a farmer by occupation and probably a North Carolinian by birth. John C. Barnwell is one of eight children, five sons and three daughters, and of these eight he was the second son and child in order of birth. His parents removed from Tennessee in 1840 or 1842, when he was about thirteen years old, by means of their own team emigrant wagon, to southern Illinois, and took up some land in Simpson Township, upon which they erected a good log house, which is still standing. The grandfather of Francis M., who was one of the first settlers in this region, was a man, of ability and integrity, whose word was generally taken as authority. He was for many years a Justice of the Peace and an Associate Judge. John C. Barnwell has been a lifelong farmer, and served three years in the War of the Rebellion. He enlisted in 1862 in the One Hundred and Twentieth Illinois Infantry as a private soldier and was promoted to be Orderly-Sergeant, at the close of the war returning home, safe and sound from the exposures of army life. His wife was Nancy Jane Roberts, of Kentucky, whose father died when she was a child. They settled on a farm near his parents, on Government land. He now has a farm of two hundred acres, and is known as one of the leading fruit-growers of this section, having large and thrifty orchards of apples, peaches, pears, plums, cherries, and all kinds of small fruits. He spares no pains nor expense in securing and raising the best that is to be had. Mr. and Mrs. Barnwell have buried one son, James Logan, who was two years old at the time of his death. They have living eight sons and three daughters, viz: William H., Josiah W., Francis M., John W.; Eliza A., wife of J. M. Gray; George W.; Mary R., the wife of W.S. Rainbolt; Thomas C.; Charles G.; Nancy Jane, wife of C. M. Rushing; and Adolphus. These children are all living in Johnson County except George, who lives in Kentucky.
Francis M. was brought up on the farm and was well educated in his youth. He was married in 1878 to Mary Ann Maxwell, of Saline County, ILL., the daughter of Dr. Golden, of that county, a noted oculist, and the widow of George W. Maxwell. She died in 1882, and Mr. Barnwell was married in 1888 to Alice Miller, daughter of Ezekiel M. Miller, of Tunnel Hill, who had been a school teacher some years before her marriage. This union has been blessed with one son, Roy, who is now one and a-half years old. Mr.Barnwell opened a store in New Burnside and removed to Ozark in 1889, where he is now carrying on a general merchandise business and doing the principal trade of the town. Mr. Barnwell was an undergraduate of the Normal School at Carmi, completing the teachers' course in 1882. He is an Odd Fellow and a true Republican, and is now a Notary Public. He also does a general business outside, dealing in railroad ties and lumber, and his business as a general merchant amounts to about $12,000 per year. Mr. and Mrs. Barnwell are members of the Methodist Episcopal and Cumberland Presbyterian Churches respectively.

Extracted 13 May 2002 by Rick Girtman from 1893 Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 368-369

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