Bedford County TN Biographies


Well versed in legal matters and possessing sound judgment and great intellectual powers, Evander Shapard has won distinction at the bar and a position of prominence among the successful attorneys of Shelbyville He was born November 2, 1843, in Fayetteville, Tennessee, a son of Robert Paine Shapard, coming from pioneer stock.

His grandfather, James Shapard, was a native, it is supposed, of North Carolina. About 1810 he migrated with his family to Tennessee, becoming one of the earlier settlers of Wilson county, where he purchased land, and for a few years was employed in improving it. Removing from there to Rutherford county, he purchased a tract of wild land lying four miles north of Murfreesboro, and there, with slave help, was en­gaged in agricultural pursuits until his death at a good old age. He married a Miss Paine, and they reared six sons, James, William B., Booker, Thomas, Lewis, and Robert Paine, and one daughter, Eleanor, who married a Mr. Harrison.

Robert Paine Shapard, a native of Person county, North Carolina, was but a child when taken by his parents to Wilson county, Tennessee, where he was reared amid pioneer scenes. In his early manhood, at a time when only wrought iron nails were in use, he served an apprentice­ship at the nailmaker’s trade, which he never followed, however, to any extent. Preferring some other line of work, he embarked in mercantile pursuits, first in Murfreesboro and later in Fayetteville. There were at that early date no railways in Tennessee, and all of his merchandise, which was purchased in Philadelphia, was transported from that city across the country with wagons. Locating with his family in Shelbyville in 1855, he here carried on a substantial business as a merchant until his death in September, 1871. A man of energy and enterprise, he was an important factor in the development of the resources of his adopted state, which he saw grow from a wilderness to a well-settled and wealthy state, with railroads extending through it in every direction.

Robert Paine Shapard married Parthenia Mitchell, who was born in Tazewell county; North Carolina, a daughter of William Mitchell, a pioneer settler of Rutherford county, Tennessee. Mr. Mitchell, who was a soldier in the Revolutionary army and took part in the battle of King’s Mountain, spent his last days on his farm near Murfreesboro. His daughter, Parthenia, learned to card, spin and weave when a girl, and after her marriage dressed her family in clothes woven and spun by her own hands. To Robert Paine and Parthenia (Mitchell) Shapard seven children were born, as follows: William, Avarilla, Edwin R., Robert A., Evander, David G., and Sarah. Three of the sons, William, Edwin R. and Evander, served during the Civil war in the Confederate army.

Obtaining his rudimentary education in the schools of Fayetteville and Shelbyville, Evander Shapard began when a youth to assist his father in the store. In 1861, soon after the breaking out of the war be­tween the states, he enlisted in Company F, Forty-first Volunteer In­fantry of Tennessee, and did brave service until the close of the conflict. During his first engagement with the enemy, at the battle of Fort Donelson, he was captured and for seven months was held as a prisoner at Camp Morton, Indianapolis. Being then exchanged, he joined his command at Vicksburg and took part in the battles at Raymond and Jack­son, in Mississippi, and at Chickamauga, Georgia, subsequently fighting Sherman’s forces all the way from Dalton to Atlanta, and taking part in the defense of that city and in the engagement at Jonesboro. From there Mr. Shapard proceeded with his regiment, which was attached to General Hood’s army, to Tennessee, where he participated in the battles at Franklin and Nashville. After the latter engagement, he went with his command to North Carolina, fought in the battle at Bentonville, and at the close of the war was in Greensboro, that state, where he was paroled and started, homeward on foot.

Upon returning to Shelbyville Mr. Shapard began the study of law under Judge Henry Cooper, and since his admission to the bar has been actively and successfully engaged in the practice of his chosen profession in Shelbyville, where he has built up an extensive and lucrative clientage. Actively interested in municipal affairs, Mr. Shapard has held various offices of trust and responsibility, having served as alderman and city treasurer and as special judge, a position to which he has several times been appointed. He is a member of William Frierson Bivouac, Con­federate Veterans, and both he and his wife belong to the Methodist Episcopal church.

In October, 1912, at the annual convention of the United Confederate Veterans of Tennessee, Mr. Shapard was, without solicitation on his part and when he was absent from the hail, unanimously chosen briga­dier general for the Second Division and at the meeting of the Tennessee Division of Confederate Veterans he was elected vice-president of the state association. Recently, a vacancy occurring in the board of trustees of the Confederate Soldiers’ Home, he was by the board unanimously chosen to fill the vacancy. These evidences of the confidence of his comrades is a source of great gratification to Mr. Shapard especially since whatever character he has as a Confederate soldier was obtained by his service in the ranks.

Mr. Shapard married, June 17, 1869, Emma F. Lipscomb, who was born in Shelbyville, a daughter of Thomas and Rebecca (Stevenson) Lipscomb Mr. and Mrs. Shapard have reared nine children, namely: Robert P., Thomas L., Rebecca S., Emma, Evanda, Juliet, Mary D., Evander and Marjorie. Robert P., the first-born, married Catherine Morris and they have one son, Robert P. Shapard, Jr. Thomas married Lula Holtzelaw and they have five children, Mary, Evander, Rebecca, Lula and Thomas. Rebecca married Sydney Garrison and has one child, Sydney. Evanda married Hugh L. Dayton and has one son, Hugh T. Dayton, Jr. Juliet, wife of Carl Douthitt, has one child, Emma Douthitt. Mary D., wife of Dr. James Ti. Morton, has one child, James T. Morton, Jr. Emma, the fourth child and second daughter, married A. M. Trawick and is deceased, leaving one child, Emma Trawick.

Source: TENNESSEE AND TENNESSEANS written by Will Hale - 1913

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