Tompkins Coleman Barney, a furniture dealer of Bentonville, whose birth occurred in Woodford County, Ill., in 1845, is the son of Harlow and Amy (Wolf) Barney. Harlow Barney was born in Luzerne County, Penn., in 1800, was of Irish descent, and was a physician and surgeon by profession. He graduated from the New York Medical College, and when still a young man went to Ohio and there followed teaching, and also continued the study of medicine. In 1824 he married Miss Amy Wolf, who was born in Newark, Licking Co., Ohio, March 3, 1809. About 1844 they moved to Woodford County, Ill., and here lived for some time at Lacon and Spring Bay, and here Dr. Barney devoted his entire attention to the practice of medicine. His wife was of Scotch descent, and died in 1855, just three months previous to the death of her husband. They were the parents of nine children. four living at the time this biography was written: Carey, farmer in Monroe County, Mo.; Allen, in the Rocky Mountains; Tompkins C., and Wirth W., who was a painter and contractor in Bentonville, Ark.
Tompkins C. Barney was but ten years old when his parents died, and he was taken to Richland County, Ohio, and reared by his mother's sister Mrs. Phoebe A. Coleman, and remained with his aunt until seventeen years of age. About this time the war broke out, and young Barney donned his blue uniform and enlisted in Company D, Seventy-seventh Regiment Illinois Infantry, under Col. D. P. Greer. He was in the battles of Arkansas Post, Champion Hill, Black River Bridge, siege of Vicksburg, Red River campaign, and the siege and capture of Mobile. He was discharged at Springfield. Ill., at the close of the war.
He then located at Bolivar, Polk Co., Mo., and invested in one-half interest in the Bolivar Sentinel. This interest he sold out in 1867 and went into Kansas, where he assisted in the survey of that State west of Wichita. and one year later returned to Bolivar, Mo. Here, in 1868, he married Miss Cornelia Evans, who was born in Polk County, Mo., in 1849. They had four children: Margaret, Frank, Lillard and Gracie. Soon after his marriage, Mr. Barney moved to Quincy. Ill., and was hired as baggage and express agent on the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad from Quincy to Louisiana, Mo. In 1878 he returned to southwestern Missouri and worked in the woolen mills at Springfield for two years. He then went to Eureka Springs and clerked in the Southern Hotel a short time. He afterward became manager, and occupied this position eighteen months. August, 1886, he moved to Bentonville, Ark., and established himself in the furniture business. He was a Republican in politics; was a member of the K. of P.: Mrs. Barney was a member of the Baptist Church. We have no record of when Mr. Barney passed away.
Adapted from Goodspeed – History of Bentonville 1889 *