22 February 2011

Pleasant Barber

compiled by Teresa Martin Klaiber
February 2011

Pleasant Barber is said to have been born 27 March 1842, his pension indicates March 1844 and census indicates as early as 1840 in Greenup County, Kentucky. When he died 19 October 1897 he died with the surname Barber. He is buried in Ashland Cemetery, Ashland, Boyd County, Kentucky.

His mother's first name is Phoebe. Many researchers have repeatedly copied other researchers work stating that she was the daughter of Joseph Barber and Nancy Goad. They lead you to believe that Pleasant took his mother's maiden name as an adult. At this point in my research I am not convinced that this is the case.

Most suppositions by those researchers seem to be based on the 1850 Federal Census for Greenup County, Kentucky. This census shows Phoebe age 41 in the household of Jacob Hood and lists the following children all with the surname of Hood: Hezekiah 16, Nancy A. 13, Pleasant 10, Tabitha 6, and Bluford 4. Also in the household is Nancy Barber [nee Goad] age 72 born in Virginia.

Looking at this census Pleasant Hood has yet another birth year - circa 1840. The assumptions made by researchers is that Nancy must be Phoebe's mother. It is an assumption because the 1850 does not give relationships in households. Being under the same roof does not define a family group simply by age. By experience I know this assumption can sometimes be a slippery slope.

Jacob Hood married Phoebe Barber 17 November 1842 in Greenup County, Kentucky. The marriage record does not state if either the bride or groom might have been married prior to this union. Most Jacob Hood researchers state that Jacob Hood's first wife died prior to the 1842 marriage. She did not. Most Jacob Hood researchers simply say he disappears from records after the 1850 census entry. He did not.

Jacob Hood married 20 November 1829, Greenup County, Kentucky Joanna Lewis. On 3 April 1842 according to Greenup County Civil Court Orders [film 989385] Jacob divorced "Joan" Hood. He was then free to marry Phoebe.

By 1860 Pleasant is residing in Ashland, Boyd County, Kentucky with Dr. Hiram Ferguson and family. The census gives his age as 19 [birth 1840/41] and he is still utilizing the surname Hood. Analysis of the 1850 and 1860 census would place Pleasant's birth prior to the marriage of Phoebe Barber to Jacob Hood. Thus he was either illegitimate or Phoebe __ was married to a Barber prior to her marriage to Jacob Hood.

Continuing a review of the 1860 census Jacob Hood is now residing in Carter County, Kentucky with wife Mary and several Cooley children. Jacob Hood married Mary ___ Cooley 8 July 1860 in Carter County. To date this compiler has not found a divorce for Jacob and Phoebe. Phoebe does not appear in any 1860 census I have reviewed but reappears in 1870.

In 1865, the subject of this study has enlisted in the 14th Regiment mustering in at Louisa giving his age as 21 [birth now stated as 1844]. He continues to appear on muster rolls, tax lists, census, and directories as Pleasant Barber with no further mention in his records of the surname Hood.

The next step was to follow the trail of the other male minors in the Jacob Hood household from 1850.

The eldest minor was Hezekiah Hood but by 1860 he is listed as Hezekiah Barber, born about 1835 in Virginia. He is residing in the household of a William Barber just 2 years older and William's family. William Barber was also born in Virginia. Hezekiah migrated to Elizabeth Township, Lawrence County, Ohio by 1870 and later dies 5 June 1924 in Wellston, Jackson County, Ohio. From 1860 until his death he continues to use the surname Barber.

The youngest male child in 1850 is Bluford Hood born after the marriage of Phoebe Barber to Jacob Hood. In 1860 Bluford Hood is in the Andrew Hood household in Carter County, Kentucky. He enlisted at Louisa in 1863 in Company K of the 45th. As expected he is utilizing the Hood surname.

While I have not located Phoebe Barber in 1860, she was still living. In 1870 Phoebe is listed as infirm residing with Hezekiah in Decatur Township, Lawrence County, Ohio. She is 56 years old. Also in the household is a Joseph Hoode age 5 born in Kentucky. For those Barber/Hood researchers who may be scratching their heads and not locating this census it is because The Barber family is listed as Barker. Hezekiah is living next door to Bluford Hood. Thus in 1870 Phoebe is cited as Phoebe Barker.

Joseph Hood"e" born in 1865 was born five years after the marriage of Jacob Hood to Mary __ Coley. To date this compiler does not have any documentation for Phoebe from 1860 until her reappearance in 1870.

Phoebe continues to reside in Lawrence County, Ohio and by 1880 she is listed at Bluford Hood's as his mother, age 68, a widow with the surname Hood, born in Virginia and her parents born in Virginia.

Phoebe's death record gives no further clues about marriages. She died 7 June 1881 in Washington Township, Lawrence County, Ohio as Phoebe Barber . The register simply states that she was a "widow" at her death.

From the analysis we can safely assume that Phoebe was in Virginia in 1835 when Hezekiah was born. She did migrate to Greenup County, Kentucky about the same time that Joseph and Nancy Goad Barber did. Joseph was in Campbell County, Virginia in 1830 and in Greenup County, Kentucky by 1840.

In the 1830 Campbell County, Virginia there are females in the Joseph Barber household but none fit the age of Phoebe. If she is Joseph Barber's daughter she is not living in that household in 1830.

Joseph Barber does have a son named Pleasant Barber. This Pleasant was born about 1808 in Virginia and married Jane Crain according to researchers. {I find a marriage of a Pleasant to Irene Crane 20 Aug 1831 in Campbell County but have not located a marriage under Jane Craine.} This Pleasant is in Greenup and Boyd County and in 1870 is residing in Upper Township, Lawrence County, Ohio. This family unit ended up in Cass County, Missouri where they died.

Joseph and Nancy Goad Barber also have a son Reuben who married Frances Mary Crain. They named their first son Pleasant Barber. He was born 15 May 1827 in Virginia. Pleasant married 2 December 1851 in Greenup County, Kentucky to Jestine Betts. By 1880 Pleasant and Jestine are residing in Oak Hill, Jackson County, Ohio.

Joseph Barber appears to have died about 1844 when the Pleasant Barber, our subject was an infant/toddler. Joseph had no land holdings according to the Greenup County tax rolls. Researchers attribute four sons to Joseph: Pleasant, Reuben, Charles and Lewis along with 2 daughters. It is possible that there were other sons, one who may have married Phoebe of this sketch.

Until further evidence crosses my desk I will try not to assume more than the records indicate. Phoebe had at least one or possibly 2 [William] male issues under the name of Barber while residing in Virginia. After her marriage to Jacob Hood her children born prior to that marriage are in the census utilizing their step father's surname which was not an uncommon practice. As the minors reached adulthood they went back to using the surname Barber.

Our subject, Pleasant Barber married 9 November 1865 in Morgan County, Kentucky to Mary Ann Phillips. The family had six children and in later years lived on West Front Street in Ashland, KY.

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