Elizabeth Cecilia Douglas Clephane was born in Scotland on June 18, 1830 and died there on February 19, 1869, at the age of 39.
In spite of being a frail woman, she was known throughout the community as "Sunbeam," being a helpful and cheery woman. Her father was the County Sheriff and her mother a descendant of the famous Douglas family. She had two sisters, but even though delicate and shy, she served the needs of the poor and sick in the community up to her physical limits. With her sisters, she gave all they did not require for their own daily needs to charity.
She wrote 8 poems in all that were published, and her second one has become famous, "The Ninety and Nine" taken by Ira Sankey and put to music.
Here is a sampling of her poems:
K. W. Osbeck, Amazing Grace : 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1990). Page 119.
K.W. Osbeck, 101 Hymn Stories (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1982). Page 41.
Photo taken from Paul D. Carter, Mclaughlin Bible Class of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, Tx. www.mcbible.com/Hymn%Study/study06.htm