John William Ballard of Cadiz, Ohio (1847-1907).

John William Ballard, the son of Dowan Ballard, Sr, was born December 1847, in Franklin county, Kentucky, and died 19 September 1907 at Cadiz, Harrison county, Ohio.1 He reportedly joined the Union Army at the age of 15 during the War Between the States. We know that a John Ballard enlisted as a Private in Company D, 119th Infantry Regiment, US Colored Troops of the Union Army on 2 June 1865 at Lexington, Kentucky.2

The 119th Infantry Regiment mustered at Camp Nelson, Jessamine county, Kentucky, the Commonwealth’s largest recruitment and training center for Colored Troops, and was attached to the Department of Kentucky until being mustered out on 27 April 1866. The responsibilities of the 119th included garrison duty and protecting railroad bridges in Kentucky and Tennessee, but most notably it was involved in skirmishes at Glasgow and Taylorsville, Kentucky.3

After the War, John William Ballard settled at Cadiz, Ohio, where by profession he was a plasterer and contractor. He married 12 August 18684 Anna Maria Smith of MacIntyre, Ohio, who was born February 1850, the daughter of Robert Smith and Elsie Cooper.5

The 1870 US Federal Census finds John Ballard, Anna Ballard and Lucy Ballard residing at Cadiz, Ohio on 9 June 1870.6 The 1880 US Federal Census lists John Ballard, age 40; Annie, Age 33; Lucy A., age 10, Hannah J., age 8; and Robert F., age 6.7 The 1900 Federal Census identifies John William Ballard and his family residing at Cadiz, Ohio: John William, born December 1847, age 52, Annie M., his wife, born February 1850, age 50; their daughters Nettie L., born March 1870, age 29 (a hotel cook); Alice M., born September 1880, age 19 (a hotel waiter); and son John E., born November 1883, age 16 (at school). All could read and write.8

John William Ballard died 19 September 1907 at Cadiz, Harrison county, Ohio. He is interred at Cadiz Union Cemetery, along with his son Robert Flournoy Ballard (a grave marker gives his year of birth as 1848).  On 20 April 1910, the 1910 US Federal Census places his widow Anna Ballard, age 57; and two of their children, Genie, age 30; and John, age 12 in Cleveland, Ohio.9 Anna Maria Smith died 11 December 1916, and is interred at Lake View Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio.11

The children of John William Ballard and Anna Maria Smith were:

Eugenia (Lucy/Genie/Nettie L.), was born c. March 1870.  The US Federal Census of that year gives her age as “2/12” and her name as “Lucy.”  She appears as “Lucy A.” (age 10) in the 1880 Census, and as “Nettie L.” (born March 1870) in 1900.  In 1910 she was living in Cleveland, Ohio, and on 12 May 1917 married William Smith in Cleveland; the marriage certificate recited that she was a widow.  In 1920 she resided in Oil City, Pennsylvania.  We have not yet discovered the date of death of Mr. Smith, but by 1930 she had married Jones F. Chambers.  Her husband pre-deceased her. She died 20 April 1953 in Cleveland, Ohio, at that time residing at 2215 E. 100 Street, Cleveland, Ohio, and was interred 25 April 1953 at Highland Park Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio.12

Hannah J., born c. 1873, appears in the 1880 US Federal Census as an eight year old child. She has not been found in any other record, except a marriage record showing that she married in Harrison county, Ohio on 20 July 1899 Alexander J. Jones, who was born in 1857, the son of Joseph Jones and Temperance Reed.13 She is not named in William Henry Ballard’s genealogical Narrative, nor is she named as an heir in her mother’s probate records of 1916.  Neither is she is named in John Ezra Ballard’s death notice of 17 January 1944.14

Robert Flournoy, born 27 August 1874,15 he appears in the 1880 Federal Census with his parents and sisters Lucy and Hannah; his enumeration from the 1900 Federal Census has not been found. In 1910 and 1920 he is head of household and married 3 August 1897 Lulu May McGinnis,16 who was born c. 1878 and died 1930 (interred at Cadiz Union Cemetery), and second Estella ________. By 1930, all the children had left home.17 A graduate of Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, Ohio, he was a public school teacher; in 1918, he was employed by the Cadiz School Board, and by 1930, he is identified in the Census as a school principal. In 1933 he was still living in Cadiz, Ohio, and died 1 April 1938 in Cleveland, Ohio.18 Their children were: 1. Heloise/Ellina (born c. 1899); 2. Pauline (born c. 1901); 3. Robert (born c. 1905; possibly the Robert Ballard listed in the Social Security Death Index born 5 December 1904, died 6 July 1993 in Cadiz, Ohio).19

Alice M., born September 1880, married Eugene Schaeffer, who was born in Huntington, West Virginia and resided in Cleveland, Ohio, at 2260 East 83rd Street c. 1930; she was living 20 January 1944. In 1920 Eugene Schaeffer was employed as a night watchman, and in 1930 as a waiter in a club.20 Their children were: 1. Ilene Schaeffer (born c. 1909); 2. Eugene Schaeffer (born 8 January 1912, died 31 December 1927);21 3. Thomas Ellsworth Schaeffer (born c. 1917); 4. Catherine Schaeffer (born c. 1919).

Neva L., born 16 December 1886, died 8 February 1889 in Cadiz, Ohio, of lung disease.  Ohio Births and Christenings Index (1774-1973); Ohio County Death Records (1840-2001).

John Ezra, born 3 November 1883, died 17 January 1944 (his tombstone at Lake View Cemetery give 4 November 1887 as his date of birth). He married Estella Houston, the daughter of James Houston and Sadie L. Hudnell of Oberlin, Ohio; a public school teacher, she was born 14 November 1891, and died 4 August 1937.22 His World War I Draft Registration Card shows that in 1917 he was employed as a clerk with the Standard Oil Company.23 In 1942, his World War II Draft Registration Card indicated that he was self employed with the firm of Jackson, Saunders & Ballard in Cleveland, Ohio; he registered at the age of 58, giving 3 November 1883 as his date of birth; he names his daughter as his next of kin.24 He graduated (1) Oberlin College, A.B., 1909,25 then (2) Case Western Reserve University Law School, class of 1917.26 He practiced law at Cleveland, Ohio in 1933 until his death by gunshot wounds on 17 January 1944, then residing at 2274 East 74th Street, Cleveland, Ohio.27 He is interred at Lake View Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio. Their child was: Helen Loretta, born 25 February 1922; married C. Morgan McDonald (1914-1993); she died 12 June 2013, and left issue.28


1. William Henry Ballard wrote that he died in 1918, but this is incorrect; his wife Anna Maria Smith’s death certificate dated 1916 identifies her as a widow. An online transcript of his death certificate provides the date of 19 September 1907, and is corroborated by his occupation and birth date.

2. Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky, Vol. II, 1861-1866 (Frankfort, Ky: John H. Harney, 1867) p. 95.  See also Historic Data Systems, American Civil War Soldiers (Provo, Utah: The Generations Network, Inc., 1999).  A search of an index of pension records at the National Archives found no pension file for this individual.

3. Online history of Camp Nelson, Kentucky.

4. Online record at, listing marriage of John W. Ballard and Maria A. Smith, 12 August 1868, Harrison, Ohio.

5. Ohio Certificate of Death of John Ezra Ballard, State File No. 1714, 19 January 1944.

6. 1870 Federal Census, Cadiz Township, Harrison, Ohio.

7. 1880 US Federal Census, Cadiz Township, Harrison, Ohio, Page 347.2000, E.D. 86 [note: the name appears as “Ballad” in some indexes].

8. 1900 US Federal Census, Cadiz Township, Harrison Co., Ohio, Vol. 77, E.D. 52, Sheet 8, Line 77.

9. 1910 US Federal Census, Cleveland Ward 14, Cuyahoga, Ohio, Page 11A, E.D. 220. William Henry Ballard wrote in error that he died in 1918, and perhaps intended to write 1908. We now know that he died in 1907 and pre-deceased his father, which may explain why John William Ballard was not named in the will of Dowan Ballard, Sr.

10. Ohio Certificate of Death of Anna Maria Ballard, File No. 73287, 14 December 1916.

11. Ibid. Lake View Cemetery is located at 12316 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44106.

12. Ohio Certificate of Death of Eugenia Chambers, State File No. 24569, 21 April 1953. This Certificate erroneously lists her date of birth as 1 June 1877 and her age as 75.

13. Online record on She is identified as “Hannah E. Ballard,” daughter of John Ballard and Anna Smith.

14. 1880 US Federal Census, Cadiz, Harrison, Ohio, Page 347.2000, E.D. 86.

15. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Harrison County, Ohio, Roll 1832246, Roll O. He is identified on his Draft Registration Card dated 12 September 1918 as “Robert Flenore Ballard.”

16. His Certificate of Death gives his wife’s name as “Estella,” who was then living at 2321 E. 87th Street, Cleveland, Ohio. The certificate names his parents John Ballard and Ann Smith.

17. 1930 US Federal Census, Cadiz, Harrison, Ohio, Page 22A, E.D. 4.

18. Ohio Certificate of Death of Robert F. Ballard, File No. 20852, 2 April 1938.

19. 1910 US Federal Census, Cadiz, Harrison, Ohio, Page 17A, E.D. 76; 1920 US Federal Census, Cadiz, Harrison, Ohio, Page 4B, E.D. 164.

20. 1920 US Federal Census, Cleveland Ward 11, Cuyahoga, Ohio, Page 11B, E.D. 216. 1930 US Federal Census, Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio, Page 2A, E.D. 351.

21. Ohio Certificate of Death of Eugene Schaeffer, File No. 73297, 3 January 1928. Eugene Schaeffer is interred at Lake View Cemetery.

22. Ohio Certificate of Death of Estella Ballard, File No. 49252, 9 August 1937. Estella Ballard is interred at Lake View Cemetery.

23. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Roll 1831857, Draft Board 14.

24. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942, WWII, Cuyahoga, Ohio.

25. Bulletin of Oberlin College, New Series No. 46, The College Catalog, 1908-09 (Oberlin, Ohio: 1909) p. 386.

26. Online record of the Case Western Reserve University; a photograph of him my be viewed here.

27. Ohio Certificate of Death of John Ezra Ballard, supra. The Certificate recites that the cause of death was by gunshot wounds at his residence and was a “justifiable homicide.”  Online obituary abstract dated 20 January 1944, Cleveland Public Library Necrology File, Id#0010781, Reel #003. News reports published 17 January 1944 recite that John E. Ballard was slain in a gun battle with his son-in-law, Morgan McDonald, 29; his daughter, Helen McDonald, (erroneously reported to be aged 29) told police that the two men fired at each other during an argument over ownership of the house in which they both lived.  “Ex-Prosecutor Killed,” The Sandusky Register, 17 January 1944, p. 6; “Negro Attorney Shot to Death,” The Piqua Daily Call, 17 January 1944, p. 3.  “Ballard, John, attorney, beloved father of Helen McDonald, grandfather of Estella Frances; brother of Mrs Eugenia B. Chambers, Mrs Alice Schaeffer. Friends may call at the E. F. Boyd & Son Funeral Home, 2165 E. 89 St. Funeral services will be held Friday, Jan. 21, at 1:30 p.m., from St. John’s A.M.E. Church. Internment Lake View Cemetery.”

28. 1930 United States Federal Census, Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio, Page 19A, E.D. 346 lists John E. Ballard, 42; Estelle Ballard, 39; Helen Loretta, 8.  Obituary of Helen Loretta McDonald states: “Helen Loretta McDonald, 91, passed June 12, 2013.  Daughter of the late John and Helen (nee Ballard).  She is survived by four children; nine grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren.  Internment Saturday, July 20, 10 AM at Lake View Cemetery.  A memorial service will follow at 1:00 pm at Viking Vineyards and Winery, 268n Old Forge Rd., Kent 44240.” (Published in The Plain Dealer 17 July 2013) (online record).


5 thoughts on “John William Ballard of Cadiz, Ohio (1847-1907).

  1. Daughter of John Ezra Ballard and Estelle Houston-Ballard is Helen L. Ballard-McDonald. Mrs. McDonald turned 90 on February 25, 2012 in Kent, Ohio. John Ezra Ballard was the first African American Prosecutor in Cleveland Ohio Cuyahoga County. I am one of his grand-daughters, Linda UmBayemake

    • Linda, generally I try to refrain from publishing the names of the living (in the name of privacy), but thank you so much for sharing.

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