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William Smith


Posted By: Kent Transier (email)
Date: 8/29/2012 at 13:34:57

William Smith was born in Kentucky, and when about ten years of age his parents removed to Tennessee and two years later to Jacksonville, Illinois, and then to Sangamon County, Illinois, where he later married. William Smith was loyally and sincerely devoted to his nation in the struggle of the Civil war and served in Sherman's army during many of its most noted campaigns, including the march to the sea, enlisting in the 15th Iowa Volunteer Infantry on Sep. 28, 1864. He participated in the Grand Review in Washington, DC and was mustered out there on June 2, 1865.

William Smith was twice married. His first wife, Martha Jane Murphy, left one daughter, Ellen, who died in Illinois. Ellen G Hollingshead, his second wife, was born in Tuckahoe, New Jersey, in 1830. Her father, Joseph Hollingshead, was also a native of New Jersey, a farmer by occupation, and spent most of his active life in Iowa. William Smith, by his second wife, had the following children: Joseph H Smith, a farmer of Windom, Kansas; William T, a farmer at Lyons; Martha J, who lives at Winfield, widow of George Conner, a farmer; Dr Flavius R Smith; Rufus H Smith, a farmer at Little River, and Dr Edward O Smith, a partner and associate of his brother, F R Smith, at Winfield.

From Illinois he removed to Iowa, and in 1874 brought his family to Kansas, locating on a farm two miles west of Old Atlanta, in Rice County. A year later he bought a farm in Mitchell Township, two miles north and four miles west of Lyons. That farm was the scene of his activities until 1892, when he moved into the village of Lyons and in 1897 to Little River, Kansas. William Smith died at Little River in December, 1904. His wife, Ellen, died at Winfield, Kansas in September, 1910. Both are buried in the Bean Cemetery, Little River, Kansas.

In every community where he lived he became well known as a man of high character, industry and exceptional ability. He was more than nominally identified with the Republican party. In Madison County, Iowa, he served as county commissioner, and in Rice County was also active in politics, and served as trustee of Mitchell Township. He was one of the staunch members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and helped to build the church of that denomination in Mitchell, Kansas.

Transcriber's note: This biography has been extracted from a biography of William's son, Flavius, that appeared in "A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans", by Wm E Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka - 1918. It has been edited for readability. Details of his military service were also added for clarity.


Madison Biographies maintained by Kent Transier.
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