WILLIAM SHEPHERD, born about 1794. He was in Washington County, Virginia by 1815. He was probably the William Shepherd listed on the 1820 census, Washington County, in the household with "J" Shepherd, who had been born between 1770 and 1775. This was John Shepherd who first appeared on the Washington County personal property tax books in 1812. Circumstantial evidence indicates that John was William's father. When John first appeared in 1812 there were two white males tithables in his household; the same was true for the next two years. Then, in 1815, John is shown as having only one white male tithable (himself), and William first appeared. Apparently William was the second of John's tithables and was probably his son. It is not yet known from where either William or John had moved when they appeared in Washington County.
William married for the first time sometime between 1819 and 1824, aged between approximately twenty-five to thirty years, to a woman born circa 1800 whose name is not known at this time. Presumably the mother of his eight known children. She died some time between 1840 and 1850. By 1850 William had remarried, this time to a younger woman, Frances, who had been born between 1816 and 1820. Her maiden name may have been Moore. William and Frances apparently had no children, at least none who lived to appear on a census.
The name of five of William's eight children are known.
– John W. Sheppard, b. abt 1828
– James Sheppard, b. abt 1829
– Sarah Sheppard, b. abt 1831
– Isabella Sheppard, b. abt 1833
– Thompson R. Sheppard, b. abt 1837
Early census records also reveal a boy born between 1819-1825, a girl born between 1820- 1825, and another girl born between 1825-1830.
The family was poor. Although William was a farmer, he owned no land, nor is there any record of his father having owned land in either Washington or Smyth counties. Apparently they were tenant farmers.
William's personal possessions were also meager. The number of horse he owned fluctuated from none to four over the years in which he appeared. the number of cattle, sheep, or hogs varied: twelve in 1853, twenty in 1854 and 1855, and one in 1861. The years 1855 and 1856 were evidently good years; in addition to his livestock, he also owned one clock and in 1855 had household furniture valued at $17--a high for him. In 1865, the last year in which he appeared, he owned no taxable livestock. The 1869 census shows that he then had a personal estate valued at $100; his twenty-three-year-old son Thompson, who was then still living at home, has a personal estate of $200.
JOHN W. SHEPPARD, born about 1828 in Virginia. He married Susan F. Harris by 1858. She is the daughter of Henry and Lucinda Harris. She was born about 1837 and died 9 September 1877 in Rich Valley, Smyth County, Virginia of fever. John and Susan had at least seven children:
– Eliza J. Sheppard, b. abt 1859
– William James Sheppard, b. abt 1861
– Mary D. Sheppard, b. 2 March 1866, Smyth County, Virginia
– Sarah J. Sheppard, b. 1866
– Martha Sheppard, b. 10 December 1868, Smyth County, Virginia
– Annie Sheppard, b. abt 1871
– Lizzie Sheppard, b. 13 May 1874, Smyth County, Virginia
JAMES SHEPPARD, son of William Shepherd, was born about 1829 in Virginia. He married Rachel by 1841. She was born about 1839 in North Carolina. James and Rachel had at least seven children:
– William T. Sheppard, b. abt 1852
– America E. Sheppard, b. abt 1853
– Sarah Sheppard, b. 26 March 1853, Smyth County, Virginia
– John A. Sheppard, b. 6 Aug 1854, Smyth County, Virginia
– James Sheppard, b. abt 1857
– Amanda Sheppard, b. abt 1858
– Eliza Sheppard, b. April 1860
THOMPSON R. SHEPPARD, son of William Shepherd, was born about 1837 in Virginia. He married Mary Jane Ward 16 September 1860. She was the daughter of Alexander Ward and Mary Brandon Buchanan. She was born about 1838 and died after 1 May 1910.
Like his father, Thompson had no land and little personal property and was also quite poor. His occupation given on various sources as either farmer or laborer, he was apparently also a tenant farmer. Before his marriage, starting in 1856, he was taxed on one horse; one cow, sheep or hog; from 1857, one clock (was it the clock his father had had?) and from 1858, one clock and one watch. At the time of his marriage in 1860 the census shows that he had $200 worth of personal property. According to the personal property tax book for that year he had a horse valued at $85, a cow at $15, a watch at $10, a clock at $5, and $150 in cash or liquid assets.
Although he did not enlist in the Confederate army until 1 April 1863, he did not appear in the Smyth County personal property books in either 1861 or 1862. In 1863, the only year during the war in which he appeared, he had no taxable property, nor did he in 1866 when he reappeared in the tax books. Thompson then disappeared again until 1870 when he was taxed on one cow of $15 value, farming implements of $5 taxable value, household furniture valued at $20, and one clock valued at $5. Perhaps he then sold, or possibly bartered the clock, for in the next year he no longer had the clock but instead had five hogs valued at $5. In 1872, when he last appeared on personal property tax records, he had three hogs, one horse, and no cows.
It is interesting that although he owned no land to farm, in 1870 his household included not only his wife, children, and stepmother Frances, but also two young black males. These were William Tate, aged fifteen, and M. Taylor, aged seventeen, whose occupations were given as "work[ers] on farm." At this time the family was living in the neighborhood of Chatham Hill post office.
Thompson served in the Confederate army as a private in Company E, 23rd Virginia Infantry Battalion, Echols' Brigade, Breckenridge's Division. He enlisted 1 April 1863 in Smyth County for the duration of the war and probably spent most of his time in service in western Virginia. During September and October 1863 he was serving in the horse artillery. In November and December of that year he was sick and in an unnamed hospital. By 1 April 1864 he was again with his company and in that year he was wounded at the battle of New Market on 15 May and at the third battle of Wichester on 19 September. Strangely, there is no evidence of a pension for Thompson.
Thompson and Mary had at least seven children:
– Aurelia V. Sheppard, b. abt 1862
– Laura J. Sheppard , b. abt 1863
– Mathew Keffner Sheppard, b. 28 February 1866; d. 22 August 1950
– Ellen J. Sheppard, abt 1867
– Edward C. Sheppard, b. abt 1873
– Samuel A. Sheppard, b. May 1873
– Stephen Sheppard, b. abt 1878
The date of death of Thompson has not yet been pinpointed. He disappeared from the Smyth County personal property tax books after 1872 and he was not found by spot checks in neighboring Washington County records. Since his wife appears as widowed on the 1880 census, it would appear that he died sometime between 1872 and 1880. However, with Mary on the 1880 census was a two year old son, Stephen. Either Thompson was alive at least nine months before Stephen's birth (in which case, where was he living?) or Stephen was not Thompson's son.
||III MATHEW KEFFNER SHEPPARD
MATHEW KEFFNER SHEPPARD, son of Thompson and Mary (Ward) Sheppard, was born 28 February 1866 (Funeral records give birthplace as Buchanan Co.) He married Mary Luticia Pennington, 21 September 1899 in Washington County, Virginia. She was the daughter of William Pennington and Cenith Mary Gaultney. She was born 4 October 1869 in Ashe County, North Carolina and died 3 September 1938 in Quarry, Smyth County, Virginia. Mathew and Mary had at least six children:
– Edward Nathan Sheppard, b. 11 July 1900; d. September 1983, Saltville, Smyth County, Virginia
– William T. Sheppard, b. 20 October 1901; d. November 1978
– Mary E. Sheppard, b. 29 February 1904; d. 25 January 1929, Quarry, Smyth County, Virginia
– Mathew Keffner Sheppard, Jr., b. 26 November 1906; d. February 1981, Marion, Smyth County, Virginia
– Robert Lee Sheppard, b. 10 July 1909; d. 23 November 1994, Glade Springs, Washington County, Virginia
– Luther Ray Sheppard, b. 14 August 1912, Quarry, Smyth County, Virginia; d. 26 May 1970, Hopewell, Virginia.
As with earlier generations, Mathew's occupation was listed variously as farmer or laborer. Until acquiring his first property in 1905, he was probably, like his father and grandfather, a tenant farmer. The nine acres, valued in 1910 at $54, that he purchased in 1905 from his brother Edward C. were located on the North Ork of the Holston River, near Quarry, about two miles southeast of Saltville and fifteen miles northwest of Marion. It adjoined land his sister Aurelia had purchased in 1897 from their brother Samuel S. Sheppard. All of this land was part of Samuel's bequest from their great-aunt Jane Buchanan. As late as 1910 no buildings were on any of the property belonging to the Sheppards. Mathew's total tax on that land in 1910 was nineteen cents and one cow was the extent of his livestock. The last job Mathew held before his retirement was as a laborer for Mathieson Chemical Company in Saltville.
In 1917 Mathew acquired from W. G. Buchanan twenty-four additional acres on the north side of Walkers Mountain--land which was part of a tract Edward C. Sheppard had sold to Buchanan. Over the next two decades Mathew purchased one additional acre (from his sister Aurelia) and gradually sold most of his land.
Mathew died at the age of 84 on 22 August 1950, at 8:30 a.m., in Saltville, Washington County, of the heart disease he had suffered for several years. A year earlier he had fractured his right hip. he was buried 25 August 1950, in the family cemetery at Quarry, by the D. R. Henderson Funeral Home, in Saltville. Services held at Quarry Methodist Church. His wife is also said to be buried in Quarry.
||IV EDWARD NATHAN SHEPPARD
EDWARD NATHAN SHEPPARD, son of Mathew and Mary (Pennington) Sheppard, was born 11 July 1900 and died in September 1983 in Saltville, Smyth County, Virginia. He married Alice V. on 19 April 1930. Edward and Alice had at least eight children:
– Willie Sheppard
– Margaret Sheppard
– Annie Sheppard
– Mary Sheppard
– Gladys Sheppard
– Josie Sheppard
– Elizabeth Sheppard
– Edward Sheppard
||IV WILLIAM T. "BILL" SHEPPARD
WILLIAM T. "BILL" SHEPPARD, son of Mathew and Mary (Pennington) Sheppard, was born 20 October 1901 and died November 1978. He married Rebecca sometime after 1938.
||IV MATHEW KEFFNER "SLIM" SHEPPARD, JR.
MATHEW KEFFNER "SLIM" SHEPPARD, JR., son of Mathew and Mary (Pennington) Sheppard, was born 26 November 1906 and died February 1981 in Marion, Smyth County, Virginia. He married Mary Frances (last name not known) by 1938.
ROBERT LEE SHEPPARD, son of Mathew and Mary (Pennington) Sheppard, was born 10 July 1909 and died 23 November 1994 in Glade Springs, Washington County, Virginia. He married Kate (last name not known) by 1938.
LUTHER RAY SHEPPARD, son of Mathew and Mary (Pennington) Sheppard, was born at Quarry, at 3:30 p.m., 14 August 1912, when his father was forty-seven and his mother forty-two. He was later nicknamed Shep. He received a seventh grade education. He had brown eyes, black hair, and grew to a height of five feet nine inches.
Drafted on 2 May 1941, Shep entered the army in Roanoke, Virginia. He became a private, first class, in HQ company, 1st Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 29th Infantry Division. His military occupational specialty was listed as Pioneer 729. On 27 September 1942 his company departed for Scotland, arriving there the 3rd of October. While overseas he served in Northern France, Rhineland, Central Europe, and Normandy. At the invasion of Normandy, he was in the second boatload of men to land at Omaha Beach. While in service he received several decorations or citations: Bronze Star Medal, Good Conduct Medal, American Defense Service Medal, European African Middle Eastern Service Medal, Bronze Star Distinguished Unit Badge and Oak Leaf Cluster to Distinguished Unit Badge. Returning to the United States on 2 July 1945, he was discharged on 10 July from the Separation Center at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland.
On 31 October 1946, at the age of 34, he and Ora Juanita Gilbert Coe, were married by H. Olin Troy, a Methodist minister, in Marion, the county seat.
EDWARD C. SHEPPARD, son of Thompson and Mary (Ward) Sheppard, was born about 1873 in Virginia and died after 1960. He married Susan Chapman. She was the daughter of John R. and Matilda Chapman. She was born about 1879. Edward and Susan had at least nine children:
– Kattie Sheppard, b. abt 1902
– Lucy Sheppard, b. abt 1903
– John Sheppard, b. abt 1905
– Bertie Sheppard, b. abt 1908; d. aft. 1983
– Hattie May Sheppard, b. abt 1912
– Curtis H. Sheppard, b. abt 1915
– Ruby Sheppard, b. abt 1918
– Suzy Sheppard, b. abt 1918
– Mary Sheppard, b. abt 1921
SAMUEL A. SHEPPARD, son of Thompson and Mary (Ward) Sheppard, was born about May 1873 in Virginia. He married Sallie, who was born about 1882 in Virginia. Samuel and Sallie had at least eight children:
– Bessie May Sheppard, b. abt 1902
– Thomas A. Sheppard, b. bet. 1904-1906
– Lula Janie Sheppard, b. abt 1907
– Howard L. Sheppard, b. 2 October 1909; d. September 1979, Norton, Virginia
– Conley W. Sheppard, b. abt 1913
– Walter R. Sheppard, b. abt 1916
– Clyde E. Sheppard, b. 16 January 1917; d. 26 June 2008, Salem, Virginia
– Earnest Sheppard, b. abt 1919