Store History

E.J. "Pete" Barnes was born February 21, 1907 in Clarke County, Chance, Alabama.

All his life he worked in the grocery store business. Beginning in 1922 at the age of 15, at John Dozier General Mercantile Store in Chance, Alabama. He made $15 a month. He moved to Birmingham in 1926 and started working for Hill's Grocery.

One day, he said, “The prettiest girl I had ever seen came walking into the grocery store. Her name was Sarah Peterson. I asked her for a date and married her August 13, 1930”. They had two fine sons, Henry Lewis Barnes and William Lee “Billy” Barnes.

They moved to Walker County in 1943 and started working for Hill's Grocery in Jasper. A few years later, Pete & Sarah opened Barnes Grocery Store in Cordova, Alabama with his brother, E.K. Barnes. The store was where the First National Bank is now located.

One day while driving through Carbon Hill he said, I would like to live in this town." He stopped and asked Brunner Nix if he wanted to sell his store. It was located on Maple Street and Second Avenue. One half of the building housed the U.S. Post Office. He bought the grocery store on January 18, 1954 and moved to Carbon Hill. In 1961 the Post Office moved into a new building and Pete leased the rest of the building and expanded his grocery store. His son, Billy, became a partner in 1960. E.J. and Sarah Barnes retired in 1965.


Bill Barnes married Patricia A. Humphries, his high school sweetheart on June 9, 1954. The Barnes’ children are Marlene, Alan, Richard & Chris.

Bill started a partnership with famed grocery man, Son Humphries, in August 1965. Son started in the grocery business in 1936 in Jasper, Alabama.  His combined years of experience was just the beginning of a successful business for Bill Barnes and family.

In 1980, Bill Barnes' son, Richard, joined the partnership. That same year, Son's Supermarket was incorporated into Bill & Sons, Inc. DBA Son's Supermarket. After Son Humphries death in 1983, his daughter, Sandra H. Lee became a partner. A dream came true for Bill and son, Richard, with their opening of one of North Alabama's most modern and well-stocked supermarkets on April 31, 1988. We decided to use our incorporated name “BILL & SONS”. The name signifies Bill Barnes, Son Humphries & Bill’s son, Richard.  The business is home owned and the employees are home people, which reflects a friendly atmosphere for shopping. Here is a picture of Richard with his son Brandon at the OLD store in June 1983.

Richard first saw Pam Lanier in the store (on aisle 5A at Son’s Supermarket) while she was looking for a dog collar for her poodle Mitzi, much like his grandfather met his grandmother.  Richard & Pam married on November 10, 1978 and have two children Brandon and Nancy. Brandon started working at the store in 1994 on Valentines Day, Nancy started on August 7, 2001.This made the fourth generation of the Barnes family in the grocery business.

“Our family serving your family


 for four generations”

The Barnes families thank all their customers for their patronage down through the years and are looking forward to serving you for many more years.