“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

City of London, England, United Kingdom

Francis Barber

A BBC History Project

Francis Barber Marker image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
1. Francis Barber Marker
Once a slave in Jamaica
Francis Barber
Samuel Johnson's servant,
friend and heir

Lived Here

Erected 2016 by The BBC.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Industry & Commerce.
Location. 51° 30.903′ N, 0° 6.491′ W. Marker is in City of London, England. Marker is on Gough Square. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 17 Gough Square, City of London, England EC4A 3DE, United Kingdom. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Dr. Samuel Johnson (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Dr. Samuel Johnson (within shouting distance of this marker); Bolt Court (about 90 meters away, measured in a direct line); St. Dunstan's Court (about 90 meters away); British Institute of Professional Photography (about 90 meters away); Johnson's Court (about 90 meters away); Red Lion Court (about 90 meters away); The Daily Express (about 90 meters away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in City of London.
Also see . . .
1. Francis Barber (Wikipedia)
Francis Barber Marker - Wide View image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
2. Francis Barber Marker - Wide View
The Francis Barber Marker is visible here mounted to the fence in front of Dr.Samuel Johnson's house, with the Royal Society of Arts Marker for Dr. Johnson visible behind it, mounted on the house.
. "Francis Barber (c. 1742/3 – 13 January 1801), born Quashey, was the Jamaican manservant of Samuel Johnson in London from 1752 until Johnson's death. Johnson made him his residual heir, with £70 a year to be given him by Trustees, expressing the wish that he move from London to Lichfield, in Staffordshire, Johnson's native city. After Johnson's death, Barber did this, opening a draper's shop and marrying a local woman. Barber was also bequeathed Johnson's books and papers, and a gold watch. In later years he had acted as Johnson's assistant in revising his famous Dictionary of the English Language and other works. Barber was also an important source for Boswell concerning Johnson's life in the years before Boswell himself knew Johnson." (Submitted on December 9, 2017.) 

2. Black roots: Francis Barber (BBC). "Johnson's views on slavery were well documented. On one occasion he famously made a toast to the "next insurrection of the negroes in the West Indies". However, that is not to say he viewed Barber as an equal. When he appealed to Sir George Hay in the Admiralty to secure Barber's release from HMS Stag, he described Barber as "given to him". He took it upon himself to remove Barber form a career path he had chosen, evidently believing that he, Johnson, had his best interests at heart....Johnson's
Paid Advertisement
Click on the ad for more information.
Please report objectionable advertising to the Editor.
will is the strongest evidence of his attachment to and respect of Barber. When one of Johnson's acquaintances and later his biographer, Sir John Hawkins, told Johnson that £50 per annum was a generous sum to leave a faithful servant, Johnson replied by saying he was leaving Barber £70 a year. His generous annuity of £70 was in addition to the charge of his books and papers. The high regard with which Johnson treated Barber infuriated many of his contemporaries. " (Submitted on December 9, 2017.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 9, 2017, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 141 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on December 9, 2017, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California.
Paid Advertisement
Sep. 21, 2020