Joseph was a son of James and Sarah Beard of Ashford, NSW. At the age of twenty five he enlisted at Armidale in May 1916, giving his occupation as Labourer. He was one of twelve men farewelled at Inverell and presented with the Inverell Medal and a pair of socks.
He joined the 1st Light Horse Regiment, 22nd Reinforcement and left Australia for Egypt on HMAT A13 Katuna in November 1916. This Regiment participated in the 2nd Battle of Gaza and the Battle of Bersheeba. Joseph returned to Australia in January 1919. He eventually lived at Gunnedah where he died in 1948.
Joseph has his name recorded on the Inverell Intermediate High School Honor Roll which was unveiled in 1924, as well as the Inverell Honor Roll.