Discover your family's story.

Enter a grandparent's name to get started.

Start Now

Biography of Ervin W. Johnson

For many years actively connected with the development and progress of different sections of this state, Mr. Johnson is now the proprietor of the Overland Hotel, in Boise, and is regarded as one of the most popular and best known citizens of Idaho. A native of Ottumwa, Iowa, he was born March 17, 1857, a son of William W. and Eliza A. (Myers) Johnson. His father, a native of Indiana, born in 1829, died in Ottumwa, Iowa, in 1867, and his wife, who was born in Botetourt County, Virginia, also departed this life in Iowa. By profession Mr. Johnson was a portrait-painter and sketch artist. In 1852 he went to California, but after two years returned to Iowa and was for some time engaged in the hotel and mercantile business in Salem, that state. In 1858 he joined a company bound for Pike’s Peak, but later again returned to Iowa, and at the outbreak of the civil war he enlisted in the Seventh Iowa Infantry, as a private. In the first engagement in which he took part, the battle of Belmont, he was seriously wounded, the injury resulting in his death a few years afterward. Having been wounded, he was taken to Camp Butler, Illinois, and it was there, after his partial recovery, that he painted the first panorama of the war. He thus delineated many of the noted engagements of the Rebellion, including the naval battle between the Monitor and the Merrimac. These pictures were done in oil and were eight by twelve feet in dimensions. He also painted the portrait of Richard Yates, the war governor of...

Pin It on Pinterest