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Alma Barney

December 15, 1919 ~ November 10, 2018 (age 98)

Alma Bernice Douglas was born in Gay, Oklahoma on December 15, 1919; she was the third of eleven children born to Langston and Lela Douglas.

Alma was raised in the church and was encouraged to attend school. After completing her education, she decided working in the field and picking cotton wasn’t what God had created her to do for the rest of her life.

Born with an entrepreneurial and adventurous spirit Alma decided to step out on faith.

Armed with the grace of God she left her home in Oklahoma and traveled to California. Alma found herself San Francisco but her adventurous nature was not satisfied and in 1946 at the age of 27 Alma headed to Juneau Alaska becoming one of the first black female pioneers in Alaska.

It was this move that inspired many and changed the lives of her family members forever.  Always making God the central part of her lifer she joined Shiloh Baptist Church in Anchorage Alaska becoming one of the original members.

In Alaska is where she met and married Ernest Barney, who she affectionately called “Barney” and from that union they had a son Michael.

After living and working in Alaska for some time Alma and Ernest wanted to get away from the rigid winters in Alaska and decided to make Portland Oregon their Final home.  Alma and Barney became an important part of the Portland community but continued to travel the country in their motor home.

In 1960 Alma became a member of Vancouver Avenue 1st Baptist church.

Alma was an entrepreneur and found a sense of self-worth working for herself, Alma had many successful businesses. Her first successful business was in Alaska in which she co-owned “A& D restaurant and lounge.”

Alma co-owned A&H Printing in Portland Oregon with her youngest sister Hildred servicing local Churches and Businesses.

Alma was influential in distributing and managing sales for “The Leisure Curl” products in Portland area.

Alma’s love for travel took her to many states in the US as well Paris and other European locations.

Alma had an artistic side as well and in her spare time made crocheted clothes for dolls, created stoned wall art and made Vintage lampshades. 

At the age of 95 wrote and produced a book containing many of things that inspired her life.

Having lived a full and satisfying life Alma Barney departed this world on November 10, 2018.

She was in the company of her niece Lela Barnett who held her hand as she started her final journey.

Preceding her in death are her parents Lela and Langston Douglas; her loving husband, Earnest Barney; sisters, Iridella McCoy, Thelma Brinson, Gloria Henderson,  Venzella Beatty, Hazel Beatty, Hildred Douglas, Irene Reed and one brother,  Christopher Douglas.

Alma is survived by her son, Michael Langston Barney; two stepsons, Ernest Barney (Atlanta), Gilbert Barney (Chicago), two siblings Itha Barnett (Portland), Earl Douglas (Alaska), granddaughter Kimberly Barney (Portland), 9 step-grandchildren and a host of great grandchildren, nieces, nephews and extended family.  All of which she loved dearly leaving her imprint upon.

Always Remember

Be Loving and True to God!

Be Loving and True to Yourself!

Be Loving and True to Others!




-Alma Barney


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