Barkley, Howard T., Sr. (1901–1981)

By: Patricia L. Jakobi

Type: Biography

Published: November 1, 1994

Updated: September 3, 2016

Howard T. Barkley, Sr., thoracic surgeon, was born in Tucson, Arizona, on November 30, 1901. He graduated from the University of Arizona in 1931 and obtained an M.D. degree from Columbia University School of Physicians and Surgeons in 1935. He remained in New York to serve an internship at Lenox Hill Hospital and a surgical residency at Presbyterian Hospital. After further training at the University of Michigan Hospital at Ann Arbor, he moved to Houston, Texas, in 1941.

During World War II Barkley served as a flight surgeon with the United States Army Air Corps, in which he attained the rank of lieutenant colonel. He was an associate professor of clinical surgery at Baylor University College of Medicine from 1943 to 1980 and chief of thoracic surgery at M. D. Anderson Hospital from its inception in 1944 to 1968 (see UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS SYSTEM CANCER CENTER). Barkley was also on the staff at Hermann Hospital, Houston, from 1942 to 1972 and served as chief of thoracic surgery there from 1946 to 1968. In 1948 he was appointed chairman of the medical staff at the Houston AntiTubercular Clinic. Among his many professional offices, Barkley was president of the Houston Surgical Society (1952), the Texas Tuberculosis Association (1956–58), the Harris County Medical Society (1967), and the Houston chapter of the American Tuberculosis Association. In 1963–64 he served as vice president of the National Tuberculosis Association. He was a founding member of the American Association for Thoracic Surgery (1948) and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (1964).

He married Helen Margaret Bugbee. They had one son, H. T. Barkley, Jr., also a Houston physician. The senior Barkley died on January 26, 1981.

Howard T. Barkley Papers, Houston Academy of Medicine-Texas Medical Center Library, Harris County Medical Archive. Texas Medicine, May 1981.

  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • Thoracic Surgeons
Time Periods:
  • World War II
  • Texas Post World War II
  • Houston
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • East Texas

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Patricia L. Jakobi, “Barkley, Howard T., Sr.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 28, 2022,

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November 1, 1994
September 3, 2016

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