James G. Barber is a historian and curator at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery. His research interests include the portraiture of the Jacksonian and Civil War eras, and the American presidency. He is the project coordinator for the Smithsonian’s popular Civil War Web site, CivilWar@Smithsonian. In observance of the Civil War’s 150th anniversary, he was an editorial consultant for two Smithsonian books, The Civil War: A Visual History (DK, 2011), and Smithsonian Civil War: Inside the National Collection (Smithsonian, 2013). He is the curator of the Portrait Gallery’s TIME magazine collection of more than 2,000 works of original cover art.
Barber was born in Washington, DC, and is a life-long Alexandrian. With family roots in Carlisle and New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, his early memories include car trips passing through Pickett’s charge on the Emmitsburg Road.