James Barber. Of the fine homesteads scattered about Champaign County one that betrays to the casual observer every evidence of thrifty and careful management and successful operation is that of James Barber, located in Champaign Township, on Rural Route No. 1 out of the city of Champaign.
Mr. Barber has been a practical farmer in Champaign County since early youth, is a young man, vigorous and far sighted and keen in handling every detail of agricultural management. He was born in Colfax Township of Champaign County April 1, 1886, a son of Alfred C. and Louisa (Peters) Barber. His father was born in England and his mother in Kentucky. Alfred C. Barber came to the United States in 1856 with his parents, who located in Champaign County on a farm. Alfred Barber lived a long and productive life, and at his death his estate comprised 320 acres. He died in Champaign in February, 1909, and his widow is still living in that city. They were the parents of fourteen children: Mollie, Cora and Laura, all deceased; Oscar, of Hamilton County, Illinois; Josie, wife of Layton Snyder, of Lebanon, Indiana; Benjamin, of Scott Township, Champaign County; Emma, wife of Cerrola Foster, of. Scott Township; Nellie, wife of John Leach, of Champaign; James and John, twins; Bertha, deceased; Fannie, who lives in Champaign with her mother; Ethel, also in Champaign; and William, deceased.
Mr. James Barber has lived on his present farm since he was two years of age. He grew up here, acquired an education in the local schools, and at the age of twenty he and his brother John rented two hundred acres of the old homestead and they have jointly managed its affairs ever since. Their business is general farming, growing the staple crops of the fields and handling sufficient live stock to convert the raw materials and to keep up and preserve the fertility of the soil. Mr. Barber is a Republican in politics and is a member of the Methodist Church.
He was married December 12, 1906, to Nellie May Miller, a native of Mahomet, Illinois. Her father was George Miller. Mr. and Mrs. Barber have one daughter, Oleta May, born July 12, 1912.
Mr. John Barber married Mary Cole in September, 1909, and they also have a daughter, Julia Bernice, born March 16, 1912.