The clerk of the district court and ex-ofificio auditor and recorder of Owyhee County, Idaho, residing in Silver City, is a native of the state of Virginia, his birth having occurred in Lynchburg on the 1st of February 1862. His ancestors, leaving their home in England, crossed the briny deep to the New World and became residents of Pennsylvania at the time William Penn founded the colony. They participated in the events which go to make up the early history of the Keystone state, and representatives of the name also fought for America in the war of 1812. Removing from Pennsylvania to Virginia, the family became identified with the interests of the south. Henry Clay Ballard, the father of our subject, was born, reared and educated in the Old Dominion and became a railroad contractor. He married Miss Sally Pollard, and during the civil war he served as a captain in General Munford’s cavalry in the Confederate army. He continued to reside in Virginia until 1880, when he removed to Colorado. He is now engaged in railroad contracting in British Columbia, and has reached the age of fifty-seven years. For many years he has been a member of the Masonic fraternity and in his life exemplifies the beneficent teachings of that order. His wife died in 1880, in her fortieth year, leaving the husband and two children to mourn her loss. The daughter is now Mrs. Carr, of Liberty, Missouri.
The son, Ernest L. Ballard, is indebted to the schools of the Old Dominion for the educational privileges he received. He remained a resident of Virginia until 1880, when he went with his father to Leadville, Colorado, where he engaged in mining for about a year. He then went to Georgetown in the same state, and there devoted his energies to railroading and mining until June, 1886, at which time he came to Owyhee County, Idaho. He followed mining at Flint for three years, and on the expiration of that period made a tour of the prominent mining localities on the Pacific slope, returning to Silver City after an absence of a year and a half. He has since remained in Owyhee County, and in 1893 was elected County sheriff. He acceptably filled that position and in the fall of 1894 was elected district clerk for a term of four years. His fidelity to duty and his promptness in the discharge of the tasks that devolved upon him led to his re-nomination in the fall of 1898. Over his public record there falls no shadow of reproach, and he belongs to that class of representative American citizens who hold public office as a sacred trust. Mr. Ballard was married April 30, 1893, to Miss Nellie L. Stevens, of Flint, a daughter of W. S. Stevens, a respected pioneer of Owyhee County. They have one child, William Henry, and throughout the community they are held in high regard.