This enterprising farmer and blacksmith was born in Ste. Genevieve County MO, May 30, 1848, being a son of William J. Holmes and Margaret Madden, both natives of that county. The former, of Scotch Irish descent, first saw the light of day in 1818, and was one of the early settlers of Perry County Ark., where he died in 1874. His wife, born about 1829 still lives with her son Richard. She is the mother of four children, all in Perry County, of whom the subject of this sketch is the eldest. He was reared in the county to a farm experience where he received his education in the subscription schools and when the war broke out he enlisted in Company H, Tenth Arkansas Infantry, serving till the surrender in 1865. He took an active part in the battles of Shiloh and Port Hudson and in many skirmishes. Returning home to his father's place in Perry County (the father having in the meantime resided in Texas), Mr Holmes remained until February 13, 1873, when he married Miss Susan Burke, a native of Pontotoc County Miss, born in 1852. She became the mother of four children, two living, Mollie and Maggie and died November 9, 1881. Mr Holmes has 165 acres of excellent land, about fifty acres of which are under cultivation. Some fifty acres of this land is in Aplin where he resides. He has been a member of the Masonic order since 1869, and is a member of Aplin Lodge No. 444. In politics he is a Democrat and for three years was deputy sheriff under Sheriff Oliver. He has been school director of Aplin for three years, and takes a great interest in the promotion of education and other worthy affairs. His mother is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.