The Arrest and Murder of James Henry Barnes


The killing of James H. Barnes, while not significant to the overall story of the Civil War, was full of meaning to his family and his friends in the community. There was much anger and distrust between neighbors on adjoining farms that sometimes resulted in lawless action.

He was hated by a majority of Franklin County residents. He was known as a bully and a man who wanted it always "his way." He made threats to those he disliked, including the Union government, Union soldiers and the Germans.

Barnes was a slave holder and considered a traitor to his country. He aided and abetted those who would tear apart the United States.

Did he deserve to die? 

Every person in the U.S. deserves a fair trial, and the ideals of our country prohibit vigilante actions.