Eliza Johnson



Contact information on HOME page

Direct descendant is highlighted in red 

Eliza Johnson   see FAMILY TREE
Born: 11 Aug 1816  Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH
Eliza Johnson


According to her obituary , "Eliza, the wife of Ben Shepard, was born at Cincinnati, Ohio, August 11, 1816.  She was the daughter of John and Elizabeth Johnson, who came from Manchester, England in 1812.."

According to the obituary of her daughter, Elma Shepard Wright, "Her mother, Eliza Johnson, was born in Cincinnati of English descent and came to Indiana with her family as a child about 1820.

Married:  28 July 1835  Vermillion Co., IN
Marriage record


Died: 07 Dec 1890  Newport, Vermillion Co., IN
The Newport Hoosier State Wednesday Dec 10, 1890
Death of Mrs. Ben Shephard
At 2"o'clock on last Sunday afternoon, the wife of Mr. Ben Shepard, residing seven miles west of here, died after a lingering illness.  She had been in poor health for a long time, and her death was no surprise to the family.  She was about 75 or 76 years old, and had been a resident of this township the most of her life.  She was a kind and good old lady, and very highly respected by all.  Her funeral took place at 10 a.m. yesterday at Vermillion chapel, the discourse being preached by Rev. John W. Parrett, who has been a warm friend of the family for many years."

The Newport Hoosier State Wednesday, Dec. 17, 1890
Eliza, the wife of Ben Shepard, was born at Cincinnati, Ohio, August 11, 1816.  She was the daughter of John and Elizabeth Johnson, who came from Manchester, England in 1812.  She was married to Ben Shepard in 1835, with whom she lived in wedlock fifty-five years a faithful and devoted wife.  She was the mother of eleven children, seven of whom are still living.
The venerable husband and father, over whom have swept full eighty winters with all their storms, is still rich in character, wise in counsel, and respected by all about him.  The sons and daughters are the heads of other families, not to speak of all.  One son is Dr. Hiram Shepard, of Dana, another Dr. Lewis Shepard, of Newport, Ind. One daughter is the wife of J. E. Wright, and another the wife of Rev. David Handley, both of the Northwest Indiana Conference.  The grandchildren, like plants set a little farther from the center, are growing up in beauty and strength.
Mrs. Shepard was a Christian lady, wife and mother, she embraced religion and joined the M. E. church in early life.  She was an ornament in society, a helper in the church, prompt in duty, and generous in all her relations of life.  She had been the light of her home, the stay and charm of her husband.  The confidence and joy of her children and a central attraction among her neighbors for more than half a hundred years.  Her place is vacant, her hands are folded: her feet are still.  Life's great work is done.  She has gone to her rest and reward.  She died in the faith of Jesus, at her home on the 7th day of December, 1890  J. W. Parrett"
Buried: Memorial Chapel Cemetery, Vermillion Co., IN


Eliza wife of Ben Shepard died Dec 7, 1890 aged 74 yrs, 4 mo. 6 days

Shepard Plot at Memorial Chapel Cemetery.  A brick boundary can be seen surrounding the plot. Within the plot, starting at the far left, are Ben and Eliza Shepard with a tall chunky headstone. Next are four tall slim markers for their four unmarried daughters, Mary Elizabeth, Caroline (Callie), Ellen V and Susie. The next two large stones are Lewis Shepard and his wife Susan Hannahs Shepard.  The next tiny stone is for a baby Shepard. On the far right of the line is the marker for Elizabeth Johnson.


John Johnson


Elizabeth unknown


Ben Shepard


1,   Hiran Shepard  b. 1836

2.   Mary Elizabeth (Lizzie) Shepard  b. 1837

3.   Lewis Shepard b. 1839

4.   Mary Elma Shepard b. 1842

5.   Harriet (Hattie) Shepard b. 1845

6.  Caroline (Callie) Shepard b. 1846

7.   Selina W. Shepard b. 1848

8.   Ellen Virlinda Shepard b. 1850

9.   Judson Porter Shepard b. 1854

10. Florence Shepard b. 1856

11. Susan Shepard b. 1860


Eliza Johnson Shepard was one of the oldest of several children and even though they settled in different states, Eliza remained very close to at least one of her younger sisters, Linda.  In an album given to her granddaughter, Grace Shepard, Eliza had added a photo of her own sister, "Aunt Linda Houk".    See photo on her page, Verlinda Johnson

According to the obit of Harriet Shepard Harlan, Ben Shepard was an "honored and faithful member of long standing" in the Baptist church. The obituary on Ben Shepard says, "he was a member of the Missionary Baptist Church."   He and Eliza had 11 children. Hiram remained a Baptist. Lewis, Mary Elma, Salina, Ellen became Methodists. Harriet became a Methodist "in her girlhood" but later "went to the Baptist denomination." Caroline died in 1869 apparently having not joined any church. Susan died in 1880 also not having joined any church. The religion of the other three children is not known.  The obituary for Eliza, his wife, says the funeral was preached by the Rev. John W. Parrett.  Rev. Parrett was the Methodist minister who officiated at the funeral of Enoch White in 1878.