- David Rankin Barbee
David Rankin Barbee (
October 15, 1874, in Murfreesboro, Tennessee— March 7, 1958, Orange, Texas) was a journalist, a public relations writer for the Roosevelt administration and a researcher in American history, best known for writing on Southern history. [http://library.georgetown.edu/dept/speccoll/cl145.htm David Rankin Barbee: A biographical sketch] ] Barbee, known, by his middle name Rankin, was descended from a powerful Tennessee political family.
Rankin Barbee was the son of Dr. James Barbee and Margaret Rankin of Jasper, Tennessee and the nephew of Tennessee Attorney General George J. Stubblefield and Federal District Judge William R. Rankin. Barbee, Sr., was the Publishing Agent for the
United MethodistPublishing House in the 1890s and pastor of McKendree Methodist Church at the same time. Rankin Barbee's mother and uncle had moved to Nashville during the Civil War to be closer to their sister, Mary Anne Rankin and her husband George Stubblefield. The family's political fortunes were tied to its relationship with then Tennessee Governor and future President Andrew Johnson. Rankin Barbee's grandfather, David Rankin of Jasper, TN was born in Greeneville, TN and had served in the State Legislature with Johnson in the 1830s. In addition, Johnson's grandfather, Andrew McDonough, had married Barbee's great-grandmother, Rhoda Sartain Roberson, in his second marriage.
From 1928 to 1933 Rankin Barbee wrote the column "Profiles" in the
Washington Post, earning him "a large and loyal audience." He then joined the administration of Theodore Rooseveltas a public relations writer for the for the Federal Alcohol Administration.
After his retirement, he became a full-time historic researcher, mostly writing on Southern history and on
Abraham Lincoln. His research appeared in history magazines and in book form. He was represented by the literary agent Barthold Fles. [http://library.georgetown.edu/dept/speccoll/fl/f204%7D1.htm Margaret Bearden papers: Folder listing] ]
* 1928 - "Excursion in southern history"
* 1930 - "Washington, city of mighty events"
* 1946 - "Did James F. Shunk forge the
Cotton Matherletter? The answer is: Definitely no."
* 1947 - "Capture of Jefferson Davis"
* 1951 - "Lincoln, Chase, and the Rev. Dr. Richard Fuller"
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