|VOL III no.3||THE ELLER FAMILY ASSOCIATION||August 1989|
(EFA President, Pro-Tem)
I was born 30 January 1921 near Robbinsville, Graham County, N.C. My parents, Jonathan Wesley Iona Eller and Lillie Kansas Rogers, reared thier family on a small mountain farm, where hard work was the order of the day and the only way of life. My father was also a logger and sawmiller. In addition to farming as a lad, I also worked with my father at logging and sawmilling for a few summers. I learned well the necessity of hard work and this legacy from my parents, along with their constant examples of honesty and fair dealing, has served me well.
At Robbinsville High School, I was more enamored with basketball than with academics; although when I reached college, determined to become a basketball coach, I soon discovered that I had a sound academic background and soon, under the influence of some great teachers, found my real interest lay in academics. At Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, N.C., some sixty miles from my home, I majored in Science and Mathematics and graduated with a B.S. degree and a teaching certificate in 1943. While in college I fell in love with two things: the study of biology and my future wife, Juanita Fisher.
After graduation in 1943, I was called immediately into the Navy, where, after training at Northwestern University, I was commissioned an Ensign and sent to Destroyer Torpedo School in San Diego, Calif. Juanita and I were married the same year and spent our first three months in San Diego before I was assigned to destroyer duty and shipped out to the Pacific area. For three years I served in several capacities as a line officer aboard the U.S.S. Erben, DD 630. I earned 5 battle stars; received a commendation for ideas on reorganization of the Combat Information Center and was promoted to Lt.(j.g.).
After a year of graduate school, I joined the faculty at Western Carolina University where I was destined to serve in many capacities over the next 36 years (member of the Biology staff, Chairman of Biology, and Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences). In the interim I earned a Ph. D. degree in Zoology and Botany from the University of N.C.-Chapel Hill. I retired from WCU in 1983 with the rank of Professor Emeritus of Biology.
In 1970, Juanita and I bought a log cabin some 30 minutes from our campus home as a week-end retreat. After retirement, we found ourselves spending more and more time at the cabin. We liked the simple life and decided to further simplify our existence to the maximum. We sold our home at the campus and gave our furniture to the kids and moved permanently into the cabin. We renovated and expanded the cabin sufficiently to meet our simple needs and "went back to nature". Our home now is a strange looking bit of rustic architecture but for us it is the ultimate dream home beside a trout stream in the southern Appalachian mountains.
We have three children: (1) Jerri Lee (Mrs. Tyson M. Cathey) A.B. degree, UNC- Chapel Hill and Masters in Ed., UNC- Greensboro. She is an administrator at Forstyth County Technical College in Winston-Salem, N.C.; two children: Holly Ann Cathey and Joe Eller Cathey. (2) Steven Fisher, unmarried, graduate of WCU and administrator with a 7-county economic planning organization in Western N.C. (3) Jeanne Marie (Mrs. James William Hubbard), lives in Asheville, N.C.; two children: James William, Jr. "J.W." and Robert Clayton "Bobby". Our children and grandchildren like our mountain cabin more than the grandparents.
Interest in genealogy and family history came late to me shortly before my retirement in 1983. Soon afterwards, while searching for some recent family history, I suddenly found myself totally obsessed with a desire to trace not only my own Eller ancestry but to learn about Ellers everywhere. Fate soon brought me in contact with Charlotte Eller Marshall and Janine Eller Porter and from Charlotte came the suggestion that we form a family association and, as the cliche goes, all the rest is history......... J. Gerald Eller.
(EFA Vice-President Pro- Tem)
Born 4 July 1946, in Cottonwood, (nearest hospital) Idaho County, Idaho to Clarence "Dale" Eller and Willetta Cecelia Carlton Eller of Nezperce, Lewis County, Idaho, the third of six children.
Attended all twelve grades at Nezperce, a town of 500, graduating in 1964.
Married 3 October, 1964, in Nezperce to Ronald Dean Porter, son of Willard (Bill) James Porter and Vida Marie Lester Porter of Spokane, Spokane County, Washington.
Raised two children, Michael Dean and Michele Rae. Michael, age 23, recently died, 8 March 1989, after an epileptic seizure in the bathtub. Michele, age 22, currently lives in Aura, West Germany, where her husband, Theodore Demery, Jr. is stationed in the U.S. Army. They are parents of Todd Curtis and Jeffrey Michael Demery.
Because of Ran's work in highway construction, the first ten years the family moved to where the jobs were in Northern Idaho, Eastern Washington, and Western Montana. In 1972 they moved to Coeur d'Alene, Kootenai County, Idaho where they still live.
In 1984 Janine went to work for a local law firm as a legal secretary where she still enjoys her job.
Interests: Genealogy, grandchildren, gardening, and collecting depression glass.
(EFA Secretary/Treasurer Pro- Tem)
I was born 20 March 1931, the fifth of six children of Carl and Lola Russell Eller.
My first five years of school were spent in a 4 room (2 grades 1 teacher per room ) school in Otis, New Mexico.
The first book I read came from the book shelf in the 3rd/4th grade room. It was " Fleetfoot the Cave Boy." I have been interested in anthropology and archaeology ever since. Being an avid reader all my life has helped me over many of the rough spots. Give me a history book and the world goes away.
The move from New Mexico to Los Angeles, CA in December of 1944, while I was in the eight grade, was quite a cultural shock. I sought refuge in books. In those two years of 1945 and 1946, 1 read many books.
In September of 1946 the war was over and my brothers came home from service. We moved from L.A. to Cottage Grove, Willamette Valley of Oregon. I went to school, my brothers went to work in the woods, driving log trucks, and working in sawmills. The logging industry was in full swing, with lots of old growth timber being cut. I learned to drive dodging log trucks. Many of the loads were 2 or 3 logs. Some of the trees were so big one log filled the trailer.
This was before the dams to control flooding was built. Quite often I waded water over my boot tops to get home after getting off the school bus. Two things changed over these 40 years (can it REALLY be 40 years?)g the roads no longer flood every spring and fall and the hills in the Willamette Valley are bare.
In the year 1981 I planned a family reunion. The three brothers, two sisters and myself had not gathered for many years. Family history had never been a big item in our lives. Having lots of time on my hands, I decided to surprise them with a history of our family. In my baby book Mother had recorded the names of the great grandparents. So I was off on the Grand Search.
Everywhere I looked Jacob Eller of Macon County, Tennessee turned up. Looking for Mother's people, Clarks and Russells, I found Jacob Eller and his sons in Hillsdale, TN. I've come to believe old Jacob whispered to me in my dreams.
In the spring of 1987 1 read an entry in the "Genealogical Helper" by J. Gerald Eller of North Carolina, looking for descendants of Jacob Eller. I wrote, he answered, and so THE ELLER FAMILY ASSOCIATION was formed, with the help of all of you.
(Eds. Gerald, Janine and Charlotte share common ancestors, the last being Joseph Eller (1792-1863) of Buncombe Co., N.C. Gerald traces to Joseph via his son, John; Janine via his son, Joseph Michael Franklin and Charlotte via his son, Jacob. From Joseph we trace back to Casper Eller via Jacob Eller, Jr. and Jacob Eller, the immigrant. Our individual family lines had long since lost contact when we discovered one another. Pictures of Gerald & Juanita, Janine, and Charlotte on next page. )
Certified genealogist for fifteen years, certified genealogical lecturer, registered genealogist, former President of the North Carolina Genealogical Society, former editor of the NORTH CAROLINA GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY JOURNAL Lecturer at five National Genealogical Society Conferences in the States: Atlanta, Fort Worth, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, and Columbus, OH. NCGS Chairman of the 1987 Conference of the States in Raleigh, NC. Frequent speaker at state and regional genealogical conferences and workshops. Editor of the ROWAN COUNTY REGISTER, a quarterly covering the 26 counties formed from Rowan in North Carolina and Tennessee. Consultant for the Snipes Family Association; advisor of MAGAZINE OF VIRGINIA GENEALOGY. Vice-president of the USA for the International Genealogy Consumer Organization. National Genealogical Society Award of Merit, National Genealogical Society Distinguished Service Award, National Genealogical Society President's Citation. North Carolina Genealogical Society Award for Exceptional Service. Historic Preservation Award for Historic Salisbury Foundation for publications. Three-time winner of Robert Bruce Cooke Award for best Genealogy of a North Carolina family given by the North Carolina Society of Historians.
Author of nineteen books, including eight dealing with the original Rowan County, NC, area, six family histories, and numerous articles an genealogical subjects. Four books inoven.Past State Regent of Daughters of the American Colonists; past State Registrar of the North Carolina Society, Daughters of the American Revolution; member of Magna Carta Dames, the Society of 1812, Colonial Dames of the Seventeenth Century.
AB degree from Randolph Macon Woman's College; graduate study at the University of North Carolina and St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University, England.
Husband is a third generation attorney in Salisbury, NC; two gorgeous, grown, unmarried children, one with MBA and the other an attorney.
Listed in the HEREDITARY REGISTER, WHO'S WHO in GENEALOGY, the WORLD'S WHO'S WHO of WOMEN and WHO'S WHO of AMERICAN WOMEN.
[Eds. The ELLER FAMILY ASSOCIATION welcomes as a featured speaker to the FIRST INTERNATIONAL ELLER FAMILY CONFERENCE, this eminent genealogist and citizen of Salisbury, N.C. whose genealogical credentials are extensive and among the most impressive in the nation. Jo White Linn is one of the nations most productive genealogical researchers and authors. The Association is honored by her participation in its celebration. A list of her publications follows.]
|ROWAN COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA, PUBLICATIONS|
JO WHITE LINN
|NO. OF COPIES|
All casebound, illus., indexed, maps & charts.
Brochure and/or index search on receipt of SASE. Prices of above books include postage. NC residents add 5% sales tax.
ROWAN COUNTY REGISTER
A quarterly genealogical magazine centering on Rowan Co., NC, edited by Jo White Linn, C.G. Unpublished Rowan County source materials of historical and genealogical nature. SASE for additional information. $21 per annum, beginning 1986, 240 pp.
Salisbury District Court Minutes
Jo White Linn, CG, Box 1948, Salisbury, NC 28145
Please send the book(s) in the indicated number of copies. Please send _____ subscriptions(s) to the Rowan County Register at $21-00 each.
Comments from the President/Editors
That the Eller Family Association, less than two years old, boasts a membership of 150 on two continents indicates wide spread interest in Eller family history. That this fledgling organization is sponsoring an International Eller Family Conference flies in the face of all conventional wisdom. The initiators of the EFA had no such expectations when they began in 1987 to explore the idea of a family association. The explanation is found in the responses of so many people to an idea whose time has come.
A Board of Directors of the EFA meeting for the first time in Salisbury, N.C. on July 20, 1989 represents real progress and serves the goal, declared at the outset, that the organization to achieve stability and permanency must do so by applying democratic principles. The Board and membership will take steps in Salisbury to insure the future of the organization by adopting a set of by-laws, electing officers for the next two years, and making plans for the second International Eller Family Conference. We thank those who have volunteered to serve the organization in this important and essential task. Our thanks, also, to Charlotte Marshall to whom the task of recruiting the board members was delegated.
The EFA has come a long way, thanks to the great support and the hand work of such people as Charlotte Eller Marshall, Janine Eller Porter, Kathy Schoen, Vance Eller, Buddy Lovette, Louise Eller (our German translator), and many others who took time to prepare and submit information and pictures for publication in the Chronicles. We urge others who have Eller family information not to delay sending it for publication in the Chronicles. Valuable information is lost each year to future generations by those of us who keep putting off such matters.
With the help of Georg Eller and Dr. Prof. K. Napp-Zinn, the EFA is becoming known throughout the genealogical circles in Germany and Austria. Interest is building and new members and new information from Europe are expected. We regret that one goal apparently will not be met, that of locating, before the Salisbury conference, the place and family in Germany from which the mid-1700 Ellers came to America.
If the membership continues to lend its support and interest and help spread the word about the Association , the future of the EFA appears bright indeed.
A concern: Charlotte and I are afraid we have failed to receive some letters and, also, that we may have failed to answer an inquiry, or I have failed to sent a copy of the Chronicle to each person who has paid, especially those who have had to wait on the reprinting of past issues. Please let us know if we are not communicating properly.
.... Gerald and Juanita Eller
|A. WILLIAM ELLER|
370 Upham St.
Lakewood, CO 80226
|BYRON HARLIE ELLER|
6507 Jack Hill Drive
Oroville, CA 95966
|R. VANCE ELLER|
550 Fox Hollow Road
Salisbury, NC 28144
|VERNARD & PHYLLIS ELLER|
2448 Third St.
La Verne, CA 91750
|THOMAS WM. FLANAGAN|
Young Harris, GA 30582
Connell, WA 99326
Jonesborough, TN 37 659
678 Diamond Rd.
Salem, VA 24153
Ex-officio members: All pro-tem pending first election-
J.GERALD ELLER, JANINE ELLER PORTER, CHARLOTTE E. MARSHALL
FIRST INTERNATIONAL ELLER FAMILY CONFERENCE, Salisbury, N.C.
20-23 July 1989
Conference Co-Chairpersons: Kathy Schoen, Charlotte Marshall
Nominating Committee: Lowell Eller, Chm., Juanita Ruetz R. Vance Eller.
On-site Conference Coordinator: R. Vance Eller
|Dr. K. Napp- Zinn|
D-5000 Koln 41
|Mrs. Jo White Linn, C. G.|
Salisbury, NC 28144
|Mrs. Peggy A. Troutman|
Rt. 10, Box 799
Salisbury, NC 28144
|Dr. John C. Eller|
Springdale, AR 72765
|Dr. Byron H. Eller |
|Dr. Vernard M. Eller |
|Mr. Buddy Lovette|
Rt. 2 Box 284
Moravian Falls, NC 28654
|Mr. Lynn Eller|
42 28th St. N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30309
(Many more will have an opportunity to give short informal reports and talks on Friday afternoon and Saturday)