John C. Barnes, physician and lumber dealer, was born in Jefferson County, Indiana, September 27, 1835. His grandfather, John, came from Culpeper County, Virginia, to Indiana in 800. McGannon Barnes, father of John C., was born in Jefferson County, while his wife, Rebecca Fouts, was a native of Clark County, Indiana. John C. Barnes was the eldest in a family of ten children ; he was given a thorough educational training, attending first the common schools, then Hanover Academy in Jefferson County, Indiana, and in 1855 graduated from Scott’s Commercial College, Indianapolis.
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At twenty years of age he began for himself, clerking in a store and post office at Hanover four years. April 24, 186o, he married Mrs. Elizabeth Coombs. After marriage he took a course of lectures at the Eclectic Medical Institute, Cincinnati. In 1866 he came to Douglas County, first landing at the present site of Hindsboro, then a waste prairie, but went direct to Coles County; after a year there he bought a farm three miles west of Hindsboro, which he improved and superintended in connection with his practice of medicine until 1883, when he sold out, came to Hindsboro and engaged in keeping a lumber yard in connection with his practice. He is a member of the Masonic lodge, of Arcola, and Odd Fellows lodge. No. 571, of Hindsboro. Politically, he is a Democrat and in 1882 was candidate for Congress on the Greenback ticket; he was a member of the convention at Indianapolis that nominated Benjamin F. Butler for president in 1884. He stands high socially and is one in whose opinions the community has great confidence. His charity and generosity are marked traits of his character.
Mrs. Barnes was born and reared in Clark County, Indiana, and is a daughter of Absalom and Nancy Bower. Her grandfather, Adam, was born on the ocean while his parents were en-route for America from Germany in 1754. Her father came to Indiana from North Carolina with his parents in 1806. Mrs. Barnes was educated at the seminary at Washington, Indiana, and remained at home until her marriage to Jesse Coombs, a farmer of Clark County, Indiana, who died December 8, 1853. After the death of her husband she at-tended and taught school until 1855, when she began the study of medicine for which, from early childhood, she had a natural inclination and talent. After preparatory study in the office of Dr. Joseph Hostetler, she attended lectures at and graduated from the Eclectic Medical Institute of Cincinnati in 1857, then settled in Clark County, where she practiced till her marriage to Dr. Barnes. Since coming to Illinois she has constantly practiced until quite recently and has an eminent standing professionally and socially.