Roderick Random Butler was born at Wytheville, Virginia, 8 April 1830. His father died when he was very young. He came to Johnson County, Tennessee at the age of 19. He married Emiline Donnelly in Taylorsville. Emiline was born in Johnson county, and her death occurred at the age of seventy-five years. A brother of Mrs. Butler, Captain A. T. Donnelly, served in the Federal army throughout the Civil war.
Roderick studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1853. Elected to the Legislature in 1859 and voted against the secession of the state in 1861. He was arrested by the Confederates three times for treason. In 1863 he became lieutenant-colonel in the Thirteenth Tennessee Cavalry. He served in Congress from 1867 to 1873 and 1887 to 1889. He also served twenty-two years in the State Legislature. He died in 1902 and is buried at Mountain View Cemetery.
Son of Roderick R. Butler: EDWARD E. BUTLER.; Mayor of Mountain City and a member of the law firm of Butler & Grayson. Born in Mountain City, on the 6th of February, 1864. Edward was the tenth of the eleven children of Roderick and Emiline Butler. He was married in Dresden, North Carolina, on the 6th of November, 1892, to Ella M. Baker, a daughter of John Baker of Ashe county, North Carolina. Their children are : Delilah Emaline (died at the age of 4) ; William Edward, farmer in Johnson county; ;Roderick R., ;and Margaret, wife of Foster C. Brown (they resided in Georgia). ;Edward was the first mayor of Mountain City.; His religious affiliation was Methodist Episcopal.