Eller Family Association

We seek to draw all Ellers and allied families into a cooperative effort.

EFA News

Historical Profiles, Research Papers, Tributes and Articles From the Eller Family Association

Updating Jacob Eller Book

cover of the bookThe Eller Family Association is working to update the book “John Jacob Eller and His Descendants” that was published in 1998 and authored by J. Gerald Eller, Edward K. Eller and Janie Eller Porter. 

Steve Eller (ellerpop1@yahoo.com) is spearheading the effort. Steve’s been working on the project for about three months. He’s looking for help. 

A photocopy of the existing book is available online (See link below).

You’re invited to review what’s there, offer corrections and – most important – provide updates.  

[ "John Jacob Eller & His Descendants" Copy | Other Eller Books Available online ]

Jacob Eller Booklet

Henry Cline Eller

We’ve recently received a 24-page booklet on the Jacob Eller family of Roanoke County.

This booklet was prepared in 1953 by Henry Cline Eller (1900-2000)(pictured left), a Baptist Brethren minister and descendant of that Eller line.

The booklet is in the library of the History Museum of Western Virginia. Their Curator of Collections, Ashley Webb, made a copy for the EFA.  The booklet is now posted in the “Books” section of the EFA website. 

[ “The Jacob Eller Family Tree” | Henry Cline Eller | Jacob Eller ]

Website Statistics

stats gfxIt was another record year! In 2019. There were more than 49,000 visits to the EFA website. And those visitors looked at 5,677,927 pages.

As of January 1st, 2020, we have 60,417 names in the EFA database (with some duplicates), 636 photographs, 649 headstone photos, 165 research papers, 19 books and 118 issues of our publication "The Chronicles."

Thanks to all the EFA members who've shared their research and made this huge collection of information available.

Ellers Who Died in Vietnam

 3 men<

Three young Eller men died in the war in Vietnam. Two of them, Lawrence and Charles, were from the George Michael Eller line and were from Ashe County, North Carolina.  The third, John Eller, was from Norfolk, Virginia. His line is yet to be determined.  We salute these men along with the dozens of others from our family who are veterans of that forgotten conflict.

 [More Information]

Ellers in the Civil War

soldiersHundreds of Eller men took part in the American Civil War. There were Ellers on both sides of the conflict. The Eller Family Association is proud to present here information on more than 130 "Ellers Who Served in the Civil War," a collection of stories researched by Byron H. Eller.

Dr. Eller has done extensive research and his articles are well documented and offer much to the annals of Eller family history and will serve future generations of Eller historians in their studies.

[ "Ellers Who Served in the Civil War"]

Clarification of Conrad Eller

Ms ReynoldsThere are two Conrad Ellers born in Rowan County, NC. The elder Conrad is the one who came to Wilkes County and died there before 1850.

The President of the Wilkes County Genealogical Society, Wilma Jean Church Reynolds, presented her finding on the two Conrad Ellers to our 2019 Conference in Wilkesboro in July.

The Ellers in the Germantown Road area of Wilkes County appear to be separate from other Ellers in Wilkes Co. NC, and are thought to be children of Conrad and his first 2 wives. It is noted that Conrad was related to many of the other Ellers settled in Ashe and Wilkes Co. NC.

[ Ms. Reynolds Presentation ]

Dutch Pine Meeting House

pine churchWe believe some of the early Eller ancestors were Lutheran and worshiped at the “Dutch Pine Meeting House” about five miles east of Salisbury in Rowan County, North Carolina. That church existed in 1771 and may have been there much earlier.

The successor church is Union Evangelical Lutheran Church, located on Bringle Ferry Road. There is a large marker in the Church cemetery that says ” Pine Church. Built prior to 1771 and located in this area. Services held here led to organization of the N.C. Synod in 1803.“

[ "Dutch Pine Meeting House" Article | Hisatory of Union Evangelical Lutheran Church ]

Karl Eller Obituary

Karl ellerKarl Eller, advertising pioneer and business visionary, died on May 10, 2019, in Phoeniz, Arizona. He was born in Chicago in 1928.

He was a pioneer in outdoor advertising, newspapers, radio and television.

He was president of Colombia Pictures in 1960. He was president and founder of "Circle-K" stores in 1983.

He was a major contributor to the University of Arizona where the "Eller College of Management" was named for him.


Byron Eller Obituary

Mr ellerByron Harlie Eller (1921-2018) was a long-time member of the EFA and the author of numerious "Chronicles" stories on Ellers in the Civil War.

He was the 1993 recipient of the James Hook award; a doctor, a teacher and an avid Civil War historian.

Mr. Eller passed away in October 2018 at the age of 96. There will be more about Byron Eller in the May 2019 "Chronicles."

[ Booklet "Ellers in the Civil War" | Autobiorgaphy]
[ Byron Eller in the EFA Database ]

Remembering Francis Eller

Ms EllerWe note the passing of Mary Francis Eller, a longtime member of the Eller Family Association and wife of John C. Eller of Rowan County, NC.

She was born on January 6, 1930 in Cabarrus County to the late Rev. Clyde D. Hopkins Sr. and Varnie Shue Hopkins. She passed away on Saturday, November 9, 2019, at the Novant Glenn A. Kiser Hospice House in Salisbury, NC.

[ Francis Eller Obituary | Frances Eller in the EFA Database ]

VGS Spring Conference Cancelled

VGS LogoThe Virginia Genealogical Society has cancelled its Spring Conference April 17th and 18th at the Library of Virginia in Richmond.

This will be great opportunity to visit the main repository of Virginia genealogical information with other genealogists. On Friday, experienced researchers will be available to answer questions and provide assistance. On Saturday, the VGS will present Anne Gillespie Mitchel and her presentation on ancestry research strategies. [More Information]

Eller Cemetery Workday

A half-dozen intrepid workers braved a chilly morning in North Georgia on November 9th to clear the underbrush and small trees on the “Old Smyrna Cemetery” in Hiawasse, Georgia.  The resting place for eleven people, the cemetery was neglected and, in the words of Steve Eller, in “pretty bad shape.”

Organized by Steve and accompanied by Korey Eller, Glen Dover, Larry Dover, Jimmy Berrong and Gerald Foster, the crew started with the lower section and the entrance road.  They plan to return November 23rd at 9AM to work on the upper section.


Hardy Washington "Hard" Eller, Steve’s Great-grandfather, was buried at this cemetery in 1908. He also has an infant grandson, Homer Welborn, and a nephew, Jacob Eller, buried close to him. 

Hardy Washington's memorial is readable but, it is broken in two places and has been placed in an aluminum pan that was formed in the shape of the memorial. There are 11 people that have been identified as having been laid to rest at this cemetery. Only about 8 of the memorials are readable.

A James B Goddard was buried at Old Smryna in 1887. His stone indicates that he left this world by being murdered. Tilman C Justice/Justis took Goddard’s life because he thought Goddard had been telling the government about his corn whiskey operation. A shotgun was used and Goddard was beat with the stock of the shotgun after being shot in the face. Justice was caught, convicted and hung on the square in Hiawassee.

[ More Photos | Hardy Washington Eller in Our Database | Old Smyrna Cemetery in Our Database ]

Journey to the Absalom Eller Family Cemetery

graphicDuring the 2019 Eller Family Conference in Wilkesboro, Dan Liggett (left) and Harvey Powers (Right)decided to try and find the Absalom Eller family cemetery.

The most recent recording, over 25 years old, had it located off Parsonville Road. It wasn't possible to get to it that way.

So, Dan and Harvey hiked through the woods off Boone Trail Road, where they met the property owner who graciously took them to the cemetery.

The full story of the search and photos of the 11 stones that were found are linked below.

[ Journey to the Absalom Eller Family Cemetery ]
[ Absalom Eller in the Database | Pictures ]

Cemetery Images

tombstoneIn a continued effort to update our website with data to help our genelogical research, we have started to add cemetery information and photos. As you know, the birth/death information of grave stones can be of immense help in documenting our ancestors.

We've entered 567 grave stones in more than 25 counties. We know we've just gotten started and so, we seek your help.

If you'd like to add a cemetery, click here for what we need and how to submit the information. We'll do the data entry. Just email it to the webmaster.

[ What to Provide | Eller Cemeteries & Headstones ]

Wilkes County "Bushwhackers"

graphic“Bushwhackers” was a term used to describe guerilla soldiers, often just thieves, who prayed on families in rural areas of “divided” states in the Civil War.  The mountain-areas of North Carolina, including Wilkes County, saw several such bands who terrorized the families of Confederate soldiers.

One such band of “bushwhackers,” Union deserters, set up in a log home on the Yadkin River in what was called Fort Hamby.  From that location in 1864 and 1865, they conducted raids on homes in and around Wilkes County.  One such home was that of James Eller.

James Eller’s grandson, Paul Hubbell, was able to pull together family stories to tell of what his mother called “"some very exciting and trying experiences that were forced upon my parents, kindred and friends, in Wilkes County and not far distant from where these gangs operated."

“The Bushwhackers of Wilkes County” shines a light on a often-forgotten aspect of a war that terrorized families and neighbors.

James Madison & Nancy Eller

The place hosting the 2019 Eller Family Association meeting is Wilkesboro, North Carolina. We believe George Michael Eller's son, Peter B. Eller died there before 1799.

Mr & Mrs Eller
The February 1993 issue of the "Chronicles" contains an article "The Ellers of Wilkes County" by Nora Robinette Eller. It details a few of the Eller families starting with James Madison Eller and his wife Nancy Louise Vannoy (above). James Madison Eller was from the immigrant George Michael Eller's line.

[ The Ellers of Wilkes County | James Madison Eller in the EFA Database | George Michael Eller Book ]


James McCarty Eller

James McCarty Eller (center with hat and walking stick) moved from Buncombe County, NC to Round Rock, TX. He was a pioneer in early Texas while indians were a problem.

eller family

On one wagon trip back to Missouri, he was attacked by indians. He killed one and managed to escape without injury or loss of the wagon load of supplies he was hauling back to Texas.

[ James McCarty Eller in EFA Database | Article on James MC Eller ]

"Bud" Eller Visits WWII Memorial

Mr EllerNesbert "Bud" Eller was in the Army during World War II. He served 14 months on the Pacific Island of Leyte.

In September 2009, he and other veterans of that conflict were flown to Washington to visit the World War Two Memorial.

His son, Stephen Eller, presented this memoir of his father's service and his visit to the memorial.

"Bud" Eller Article | "Bud" Eller in EFA Database ]

North Georgia Gathering


Ellers in the North Georgia area met October 19th in Nacoochee, GA They exchanged family information and shared dinner, door prizes and entertainment.

There were folks there that helpedp family members find their Eller family line back to John Jacob Eller.

2019 Conference - Wilkesboro, NC

Our 30+ year tradition continued in July with our bienial Eller Family Association conference in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. Some 50 people attended all or part of the conference which featured presentations on a wide range of topics, tours and socializing. Special thanks to our hostess, Christine Eller Walker. More photos and conference highlights in the upcoming "Chronicles" and here on the EFA website. 

eller group

Wilkesboro was selected for the conference because of the large number of Eller families there.

It is believed that Peter Eller (1748-1799), son of George Michael Eller (1722-1778), the immigrant, setteled in Wilkes County. Peter is believed to be the only child by George Michael's first (unknown) wife.

There are also descendants of Conrad Eller (1784-before 1850), son of Melchior Eller (1735-1799), the immigrant, in an area along Germantown Road in Wilkes County. We are working now to doccument that line.

Our next conference wil be in 2021 in Georgia. Look for more details as we get closer to the date.

[More Wilkesboro History | The Ellers of Wilkes County | Peter Eller in Database ]

Do You Know These People?

unidentified family

We believe the people in the photo above may be an Eller family. This portrait was shown around the EFA Conference and no one was able to identify them for certain.

Donna Mackay of Saint George, Utah, says she believes the photo is of the Abraham Lincoln and Rebecca (Crane) Eller family who lived in Cascade Montana in the early 1900’s. In total they had 14 children and homesteaded near Great Falls, Montana. Abraham was Ms. Mackay's fraternal grandfather. Her father, Donald D Eller, was their third youngest. She says there is an Eller family cemetery in Casner, Montana.ontana.