The Name Is Never the Same – Marandy, Mary D., etc.

By – Don Taylor

Seldom have I encountered a person whose name is different in virtually every record I find for the individual.  It makes me wonder if Marada Lister’s name metamorphed over the years or if the pronunciation was such that people seldom got it right when they heard it.

Marandy A.
Merida A.
Marriage Registration
Morady A.
Morady A.
Maraday A.
Son Ray’s Marriage License
Mary D.
City Directory
Maranda A.
Grave Marker

Ten records and nine different spellings of her name.  The bottom line is that, because she was buried as Marada, she probably became known as Marada in her later life and I’ll call her that, too.

Biography – Marada A Lister Barnes (1867-1932)

Marada Barnes c. 1916 Cropped From Photo Courtesy Kenneth Smith

Marada A. Lister was born on 27 February 1867[i] in New Lebanon, Indiana[ii] to Nimrod and Malinda (Evans) Lister the sixth of eight children. Her older siblings included:

           James M., born about 1854 in Ohio.
Nancy, born about 1856 in Ohio.
Charles C.,  born about 1859 in Indiana.
Eliza J., born about 1861 in Indiana.
Charlotte, born about 1865 in Indiana.
Her brother William was born in 1868 or 1869.

 The 1870 Census find Marada living with her father, mother, and apparently six siblings. Her father was a farmer owning real estate valued at $660[iii].

In 1872 her youngest known sibling, Sarah F., was born.

The 1880 Census finds the family down to her father (still a Farmer), mother (Keeping House), the 25-year-old oldest brother James living at home working as a huxter (Huckster). Marada and her two younger siblings were attending school[iv].

In 1886, when Marada was only 19, she became pregnant. It is unlikely that Marada was married because the child was surnamed Lister. Also, when Marada and Joel Barnes marry, it is Marada’s 1st marriage and Joel’s 2nd marriage[v]. Finally, John is listed in the 1910 Census as Joel Barnes’ stepson which eliminates the possibility that Joel was John A. Lister’s father and was conceived before Joel and Marada married.

Marada married Joel Clinton Barnes on 18 June 1893 in Sullivan County, Indiana[vi].  Joel had two (of five)  children from a previous marriage still living, so with Marada’s son John, the new family consisted of three children; however, the family would quickly begin working on “ours.”

Ray was born in 1895.
Ada was born in 1898; she died in 1899 at the age of twenty-one months.

1899 plat map showing the Barnes farm.
From An Illustrated Standard Atlas of Sullivan County, Wilson, Fuller & Company
Source: Indiana Memory Digital Collection

The 1900 Census finds the Barnes family in Turman Township, Sullivan County, Indiana with Joel owning a mortgaged farm that he is farming, his wife Marada, and three children at home. Alma, John A, and Ray[vii].

Nelson was born 1901; he died in 1902 at the age of nineteen months.
Essie Pansy was born in 1903
Mabel Bessie was born in 1906.

In August 1909, Mrs. Clint Riggs assaulted Marada Barnes.  Mrs. Riggs claimed that Mrs. Barnss was accusing her (Mrs. Riggs) of stealing chickens. A fight ensued with much hair pulling.[viii]

The 1910 Census finds the Barnes family still living in Turman Township. Joel is the head, owning his mortgaged farm. Marada is with him as are five of the children. Joel’s daughter Anna, Marada’s son John A., that Joel and Marada’s children, Raye, Essie, and Mabel[ix].

 By the 1920 Census, Anna and John are out of the house, and only Raye, Essie, and Mable are living at the house in Turman Township. The two daughters are attending school, but Ray is working as an Oil Driller[x].

In 1921 Joel died leaving the 53-year-old Marada a widow.

Marker Marada A. Barnes
Drake Cemetery, Fairbanks, Sullivan Co., Ind.
Source: Find-a-Grave Memorial 37229133

The 1930 Census find the 63-year-old Widow Barnes living with her daughter Essie’s family.[xi]

Marada A. Lister Barnes died on 3 May 1932. At the age of 65.

She was buried at the Drake Cemetery, Fairbanks, Sullivan County, Indiana. Her marker includes the symbol of the Eastern Star showing her affiliation with that organization[xii].

Marada was a member of the Fairbanks Eastern Star #321.[xiii]

Further Actions:

  • [Question: Is Mrs. Clint Riggs the mother-in-law of Flora Barnes Riggs and mother of Harlon Riggs?
  • Continue with Marada’s life using newspapers.
  • Follow the status of Marada’s children.

List of Greats

1.     Marada A. Lister

2.     Nimrod Lister


[i] A history of Sullivan County, Indiana, closing of the first century’s history of the county, and showing the growth of its people, institutions, industries and wealth. New York: The Lewis Pub. Co. Pages 234-236.

[ii] New Lebanon is an unincorporated community in Gill Township, Sullivan County, Indiana.

[iii] 1870 Census; Nimrod Lister – Indiana, Sullivan, Turman, Page 12, Line 24.

[iv] 1880 Census; Nimrod Lister – Indiana, Sullivan, Gill Township, ED 329, Page 5, Line 18

[v] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 13 June 2016), Joel C Barnes and Morady A Or Mary A Lister, 18 Jun 1893; citing Sullivan, Indiana, United States, various county clerk offices, Indiana; FHL microfilm 1,392,999.

[vi] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 13 June 2016), Joel C Barnes and Morady A Or Mary A Lister, 18 Jun 1893; citing Sullivan, Indiana, United States, various county clerk offices, Indiana; FHL microfilm 1,392,999.

[vii] 1900 Census; Indiana, Sullivan, Turman, ED 138, Sheet 7B – Joel C Barnes

[viii] Sullivan Daily Times – Sullivan, IndianaAugust 21, 1909 – WOMEN PULL HAIR ONE IS ARRESTED

[ix] 1910 Census: Indiana, Sullivan, Turman, District 178, Page 8A – Joel C Barnes

[x] 1920 Census; Indiana, Sullivan, Turman, District 0270, Sheet 1B

[xi] 1930 Census; Indiana, Vigo, Terre Haute, Page 9A – Bert A Roberts

[xii] Find-a-Grave; Marada A Barnes – Memorial# 37229133

[xiii] Sullivan Union – Sullivan, Indiana – January 22, 1908 – “Conferred the Degrees.”

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