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Below is a family biography included in The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois published by Biographical Publishing Co. in 1894.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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JOEL C. BARBER, M. D., is a fine representative of the prominent physicians of Randolph County who are successfully engaged in the practice of their noble calling. He is a man of marked enterprise, possesses great ability, and has an extensive practice throughout this part of the country. Born June 24, 1838, he is a native of Rockwood, where he has spent his entire life. He is a son of Alexander and Jinsy (Crane) Barber, also natives of this county, the mother born on St. Mary’s River, and the father at Ellis Grove.

Joel C. spent his boyhood days in and near Rockwood, and attended the district schools of his native place until reaching his eighteenth year, when he began reading medicine in the office of his uncle, Joseph Barber, a prominent physician of Rockwood. Later he attended lectures at the Eclectic Medical Institute, Cincinnati, Ohio, and returning thence to his native place, he resumed his studies, and also engaged in practice to some extent.

The outbreak of the late war caused Dr. Barber to abandon temporarily all thought and ambition toward building up a practice. Enlisting his services in behalf of the Union, he became a member of Company H, Twenty-second Illinois Infantry, and served in its ranks for three years and two months. During that period he fought under Generals Grant, Sherman, Sheridan, Pope and Thomas, and participated in many of the hard-fought battles of the war, among which were Belmont, Farmington, Corinth, Stone River, Resaca, and New Hope Church, near Marietta, Ga. After receiving his discharge he was mustered out of service at Springfield, and coming direct to Rockwood, resumed the study of his profession, and also practiced some. In 1874 he was graduated from the American Medical College in St. Louis. He has since continued to minister to the bodily ills of the people, his practice covering a wide circuit.

Dr. Barber was united in marriage, February 1, 1866, with Miss Anna, daughter of Alfred G. and Frances (Cornelius) McCormack. Their union has been blessed by the birth of twelve children, namely: Albert, Harry G., Olive F., Joel C., Mary, Carrie, Ora, Nina, Willie, Charles A., Girdy A. and Maggie B. Of these, six are deceased: Harry G., Mary, Carrie, Nina, Willie and Maggie B. Dr. and Mrs. Barber are members in good standing of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In his political relations the Doctor has always voted with the Republican party, and is influential in the public affairs of the community.

For several generations the Doctor’s ancestors have been prominent and loyal citizens of our Government. His paternal grandfather, Alexander Barber, was appointed by the Governor as Captain in the Indian War between 1812 and 1815, and was placed in charge of two or three keel boats with one hundred men, among whom was Joel Crane, our subject’s maternal grandfather. The boats had to be towed by hand from Kaskaskia to Peoria with supplies for the army. The Indians having taken a different route from that anticipated, the company fell back, bringing as prisoners some French who were in sympathy with the Indians.

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This family biography is one of 679 biographies included in The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois published in 1894.  View the complete description here: The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois

View additional Randolph County, Illinois family biographies here: Randolph County, Illinois Biographies

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