Eliza Barton was born July 15, 1844, in the town of St. Helens, six miles from Liverpool, England. In March, 1854, her mother died leaving Josiah, the father with three daughters and two sons. He became increasingly bitter, probably because of his wife's death, his many responsibilities regarding his young family, and especially was he resentful toward the Mormons. He finally told Eliza if she continued her affiliation with the Church he would disinherit her. Not being able to deny her testimony, she left England in 1862 on the ship Manchester in company with her uncle, John Barton, his wife Elizabeth and family. In Florence, Nebraska three of their sons, William and James, twins, and John who had all come to America two years before, met their father and other members of the family, including Eliza, and together they made the journey across the plains in the Ansel P. Harmon company. Within a short time after their arrival in Salt Lake City they moved on to Kaysville, Davis County.
On the 4th of July, 1863, Eliza married her cousin, James Barton. Kaysville was their home until 1879 when they returned to Salt Lake City where James found work on the railroad. He was a master mechanic. They settled in the 21st Ward. It was a new ward on the north bench taken from the 20th Ward and extended as far north as there were houses and to the east as far as the mountains. For forty years this was their home. Lucy Barton Seely, a daughter of Eliza and James, tells of her mother's experiences as a pioneer doctor:
"Early in life it became evident that Eliza was born with a gift for healing and caring for the sick. Many of her ancestors were doctors. She passed the requirements of a doctor and was given a certificate to practice by Dr. (Denton) Benedict who was a member of the first Medical Society of Utah. She was the instrument for bringing many, many children into the world. She was called to many homes by doctors because of her great skill and knowledge in healing milk leg after childbirth. When she called, she would immediately roll up her sleeves and pitch in. One doctor said, 'I ceased to worry and I knew my patient would get well if I could get Sister Barton to come and help.'
"As a child I trotted all over the ward taking medicines to the houses of sick children or other members of the family. My mother walked up hills and down hills and through many streets to the houses of the sick. Many times I have heard a knock on the door at night and a man's voice urging her to hurry. We perhaps wouldn't see her for many days. Ofttimes we would hear someone in the coal house and when we went to see who was taking the coal they would tell us that our mother had sent them as she needed more heat for her patient. This would happen often as the people were usually very poor. She gave her time and much of her own provisions to the poor. I remember she made a spring tonic that was marvelous in curing the sick. She got the ingredients from the Z.C.M.I. and George Reid, the druggist, was a good friend of our family. She would go and stay with patients who had diphtheria, a fearful disease in those days, until they had fully recovered. Once she was called to go to Evanston, Wyoming to nurse a boy who had been kicked by some animal. She stayed five weeks until he was well. We, at home, had to get along without her most of the time.
"Mother served as a counselor in the 21st Ward Relief Society to Sister Burt, who was the wife of the Bishop. After her death mother was appointed president. On her sixty-eighth birthday, and on the fourteenth anniversary of her appointment as president of the Relief Society, she was the honored guest at a social given by her associates in the 21st Ward Hall. High tribute was paid her for her faithful labors as Relief Society worker and as a friend of the sick and those in need. She was the mother of eleven children. Two died in infancy and another died following the birth of her second child in 1905. Mother died February 23, 1919."