Son of Joshua Barton, Sr. (1718-1779) and his second wife, Susannah Griffith Dodd (1738- ), Joab was born in VA. While on a surveying expedition in 1779/1780 in KY for the Watauga Settlement where they lived, Joshua and son Joab were set upon by hostile Shawnee Indians. Joshua was killed and Joab was taken captive and raised by the tribe. He married Ita Ha Ha, a Shawnee woman, and had at least one daughter by her. Some time later, he is said to have been found in MO by Daniel Boone, who had apparently known his father. Joab and daughter Jane (Jenny) reportedly left to live with his half-sister, Sarah Barton Murphy, in Farmington, MO. He remarried, eventually divorcing his second wife, Anna Musick, after having two more children and moving to Cole Co., MO, where he died in 1829.