Born in 1827 at Genoa, Italy, Joseph Barberis was the son of a Parliamentary Secretary, Charles Barberis.
Barberis was fluent in English, Spanish, Italian and French languages. He migrated to South America at an early age, then the lure of the Californian gold rushes attracted him. He came to Australia in 1851 travelling to the Ballarat goldfield. … While in Ballarat Mr Barberis was a spectator of the Eureka Stockade riot events, and was one of the few to know where the famous Peter Lalor was hidden in a shaft, and helped convey food to him. He also was one of those who knew where the rebel’s arm had been buried in the ground … Echuca 1 August 1911
Goldfields Involvement, 1854
- … While in Ballarat Mr Barberis was a spectator of the Eureka Stockade riot events, and was one of the few to know where the famous Peter Lalor was hidden in a shaft, and helped convey food to him. He also was one of those who knew where the rebel’s arm had been buried in the ground. … 
Post 1854 Experiences
Barberis was engaged in mining at the Jim Crow Diggings ( Daylesford ) for some years, before he sailed to Shot-over River, New Zealand. He then went to Queensland, New South Wales, and then returned to Ballarat and Daylesford. In Ballarat he started an hotel business. He went to Echuca where he was prominent in civic affairs, becoming a member of the council in 1887. He was re-elected in 1890.
When in Ballarat Joseph Barberis ran the following hotels:-
1870 - Supreme Court Hotel, 104 Lydiard Street South, Ballarat.
1870-1872 - The Eagle in Armstrong Street South.
1873 - New Englington Hotel, Main Road, Ballarat East.
1874-1874 - The Exchange, 85 BridgeSt, Ballarat.
1875-1876 - Royal Mail Hotel, Lydiard Street North, Ballarat.
At the age of 84 Barberis died in 1911 at his residence in Collier Street, Echuca, in Victoria.
- Mr. Joseph Barberis, a pioneer resident of Echuca, died on Monday evening, aged 81 years. Deceased was born at Genoa, Italy, and came to Victoria in 1851. He followed mining pursuits, after which he became successively interested in some of the leading hotels in Ballarat and Daylesford. He was a spectator of the Eureka Stockade riot, and was one of the few who knew the shaft in which Peter Lalor was hidden during those stirring times. Mr Barberis ultimately came to Echuca. He was a large property holder. He was for nine years a councillor of the borough of Echuca and one of the founders of the local hospital. He leaves an adult family of three daughters, and one son.
Corfield, J., Wickham, D., & Gervasoni, C. The Eureka Encyclopaedia, Ballarat Heritage Services, 2004.
- Echuca, 1 August 1911.
- THe Age, 01 August 1911.