SMITH, John M. 1849-1931
Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 9/1/2015 at 08:57:23
John M. Smith Died Suddenly Saturday Evening
Came To Hardin County 68 Yrs. Ago; Lived in Grundy County 44 Years
Spent 4 Years With Govt. Pack Train
Was In Failing Health For Five Years Following Critical Operation
John M. Smith died suddenly at his home in Grundy Center about nine o'clock Saturday evening. He had been down town during the day and was feeling as well as he had been for several months and he ate his usual meal at supper time. About eight o'clock while he was seated in a chair he became dizzy and his wife put him to bed and called the doctor. He seemed to be recovering when the doctor left him at nine o'clock, but a few minutes later he passed peacefully away.
Mr. Smith's health had been impaired during the past five years following a very serious operation. Two years ago he suffered a relapse and life for several days at that time hung by a narrow thread. He gradually regained some of his former strength and was able to be up and about the house during the day and he usually made one or more trips down town daily.
Funeral services were held at the home at 2:30 Tuesday afternoon. The services were in charge of Rev. E. E. Heltibridle, a neighbor and an old friend of many year's standing. Rev. A. G. Annette, pastor of the Baptist church, assisted at the service. A male quartet consisting of Dr. W. Rutgers, R. S. Taft, George Robinson and J. Primus took part in the service. The floral offerings were abundant and beautiful. Burial was in the Grundy Center cemetery.
Coming to Iowa 68 years ago, Mr. Smith witnessed a country largely of raw prairie grow from year to year into an agricultural paradise. At the age of 19 he decided to see more of the country in its primitive state and went west and roughed it for several years. He was near the Custer massacre and helped to bury the dead on that memorable battlefield. After looking about in the west for ten years he decided that Iowa suited him best and he returned to remain for the rest of his lifetime.
During the many years that Mr. Smith made his home in Grundy county he established a reputation for industry, thrift and integrity that he leaves as a memorial to a long and useful life.
(By Rev. E. E. Heltibridle)
John M. Smith with his twin brother William, was born in Glasgow, Scotland, June 19, 1849. They were the youngest of seven brothers. All of his brothers have preceded him in death. When six weeks old his parents sailed for America, coming over in a sailing vessel which reached New York six weeks and six days after leaving Scotland.
Leaving New York, they moved to a farm near Ripon, Wisconsin, living there until the year 1863, when they moved to Eldora, Iowa. About the age of 19 John Smith went west to Denver, spending about ten years out there, four years of which he was in charge of a pack train freighting for the government, during the Sioux Indian uprising. While out there he helped to bury Custer's men after they were killed by the Indians.
March 10th, 1885, he was united in marriage to Sarah Wilson at Grundy Center after which he lived on a farm near Eldora for six years. In 1893 he bought a farm in Grundy county where he lived until 1913 when he moved to Grundy Center where he has since made his home.
He is survived by his wife and four children, J. Clyde and Mrs. O. U. Holeman of Grundy Center, Glenn C. of Iowa Falls and J. Miles Smith of Storm Lake, Iowa; also six grandchildren, with many friends and neighbors who will miss his presence as he moved among them.
--The Grundy Register (Grundy Center, Iowa), 17 September 1931, pg 1
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