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SMITH, Henry Clay - 1890 Bio (1841-1920)


Posted By: Joey Stark
Date: 8/26/2007 at 20:58:40

Portrait and Biographical Album of Jefferson and Van Buren Counties, Iowa, Printed 1890 by Lake City Publishing Co., Chicago
Pages 387-388

Henry C. SMITH, a farmer of Cedar Township, Jefferson County, residing on section 23, is a native of Jefferson County, Ky., where his birth occurred on the 23d of October, 1841. His parents were Nuby and Lydia (BALLINGER) SMITH. His father, a native of North Carolina, born November 24, 1816, accompanied his parents to Jefferson County,Tenn., where he became acquainted with and married Mrs. Lydia (BALLINGER) FRAZER. The lady was born in Tennessee, October 1, 1807, and by her first marriage became the mother of two sons and two daughters. The year 1841 witnessed the removal of Nuby SMITH and his family to Jefferson County, Ky., but after a short time he made his way to Jacksonville, Ill., where he spent one winter. The following spring he came to Iowa and took up his residence in Jefferson County, which was the third county bearing that name in which he had made his home. He entered a claim in the new purchase and planted a crop. His oxen having strayed away, he started in pursuit of them, and on his return found that his crop had been eaten up. Discouraged, he traded his claim for a horse and moved to the SMITH homestead, where he lived until his death. For the first forty acres of that farm he gave in payment his team. Hard was the struggle to get a start, but by persevering industry and good management he at length overcame all obstacles, and at his death was a well-to-do citizen of the community, owning a fine farm of two hundred and sixty acres, upon which were many good improvements that greatly enhanced its value. In politics he was first a Whig and later a Republican. His death occurred September 1, 1876, and his wife, who was a consistent Christian lady, was called to her reward June 27, 1888, having survived her husband twelve years. Of their four children -- Sarah E. became the wife of Allen KING, and is now deceased; Henry C. is the second in order of birth; Winfield S. is a resident farmer of Cedar Township; and Zachary T. is a blacksmith of Wooster.

The early life of our subject passed uneventfully, unmarked by any occurrence of special importance. He attended the district schools of the neighborhood, and assisted in the labors attending the cultivation of his father's farm until he had attained to mature years, when, on the 11th of August, 1862, he responded to the country's call for troops and donned the Union regimentals. He was assigned to Company G, Thirtieth Iowa Infantry, and went into camp in Keokuk, Iowa, where he took the measles. He was unable to march when his company was ordered to the front, but joined his command at Milliken's Bend. He participated in a number of important engagements, including the battle of Jackson, Miss., the capture of Vicksburg; Cherokee Station, Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. During the last named an Enfield rifle ball passed through his left ankle and lodged in his right. As a result his right foot had to be amputated, and ere it was healed amputation was twice more necessary. After spending some three months in Nashville, Tenn., and five months in Louisville, Ky., thence to Cincinnati, he was allowed to return home, and in Keokuk, Iowa, on the 1st of February, 1865, received his discharge. Ever faithful to his duty, he proved a loyal soldier, and brought honor to the colors which he wore.

Since the war Mr. SMITH has made Jefferson County his home, but has spent considerable time in traveling in this and foreign countries. During his journeyings he has visited Missouri, Kansas, Wisconsin and California, and in 1886 made a trip to Belgium, returning after three months with two thoroughbred Belgian draft horses which he still owns. Socially, he is a member of the Grand Army Post, and politically, is a Republican. For almost half a century he has made his home in Jefferson County, and is one of her highly respected citizens. The same faithfulness which marked his carer as a soldier has been displayed in the discharge of every private duty, and has won him the confidence and high regard of those with whom he has had business or social relations.

*Transcribed for genealogy purposes; I have no relation to the person(s) mentioned.


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