Ellen Fearnaught Ellison was born in 1887 in Vernon, the second child of Sophie and Price Ellison. Ellen attended public school in Vernon, then Havergal Ladies' College in Toronto from 1905 to 1907. Winning a scholarship for further study, she entered McGill University in Montreal, staying there from 1908 to 1910. In 1913, she married Rev. Arthur Henry Sovereign of Vancouver, leaving shortly after for England where Arthur did postgraduate work at Oxford. The couple returned to Vancouver in 1914. In 1931, Arthur was elected Bishop of Yukon and the family moved to Dawson City. The following year he became Bishop of Athabasca in Peace River, and continued in this post for the next twenty years until retirement in 1950. At this time, Ellen and Arthur moved back to Vernon where both took an interest in community affairs. They had four daughters and one son. Arthur died in 1966, while Ellen died in 1977.