Joseph Henry Barnard, military surgeon and diarist, was born in Deerfield, Massachusetts, on April 21, 1804. He was a sailor for three years before graduating from Williams College in 1829. He practiced medicine in Canada until 1835, when he moved to Chicago. He left for Texas on December 14, 1835, and enlisted in the revolutionary army as a private with the Red Rovers. While surgeon to James W. Fannin, Jr.'s command, he was captured at Goliad, but his life was spared so that he might treat the wounded Mexicans at Goliad and San Antonio. In San Antonio he lived with José Ángel Navarro. Barnard's diary is one of the best sources of information covering this period. He served in the army in Galveston from June 10 to October 28, 1836. He moved to Fort Bend County in 1837, was county clerk in 1838–39, and represented the county in the House of the Eighth Congress, 1843–1844. He married Mrs. Nancy M. Danforth on July 30, 1841. Dr. Barnard moved to Goliad and lived there until 1860, when he went on a visit to Canada, where he died in 1861.