| Samuel Smith appears on the 1800 census of Buncombe County with the following family unit: one male 26-45, one female 16-26, and 2 males 0-10, with no slaves. Samuel Smith was born 29 Aug 1765 in a public inn, in Albermarle Co, VA as his father was moving his family from Cecil Co, MD to Guilford Co, NC. He died 27 May 1856 in Rusk Co, TX, aged 90 years, 8 months and 29 days. Samuel Smith’s parents were Joseph Smith, born 1 Apr 1730 in Cecil Co, MD; and Rebecca Death/D’Ath, born 29 Aug 1739 also in Cecil Co. MD.
Joseph and Rebecca Smith were members of the Nottingham Presbyterian Church of Rising Sun, MD. This church was located nearly on the boundary line between MD and PA. In the mid-1700’s a fierce boundary quarrel arose between MD and PA in which several people were killed. In order to get away from this trouble, the members of the Nottingham Church elected to send representatives to western NC to negotiate for a large block of land to which in the period 1755-1765, most of the church members moved. It was to join their kinsmen and fellow church members in Guilford Co, NC, that Joseph Smith was taking his family when they had to stop at the inn in Albermarle Co, VA, for the birth of Samuel.
In the fall of 1775, Joseph Smith settled his family at the “Hawfields,” on the Haw River in western NC. The family lived there until about 1781 when they moved to Pleasant Gardens about six miles NE of Davidson’s Fort, now known as Old Fort. It was while living here in 1782 or 1783 that young Sam then only about 17, or 18, volunteered for a very dangerous task.
After the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown, Gen. McDowell who was in command of “Old Fort” on the western frontier of NC, hoping to end the hostilities between the Americans and the Cherokees, decided to send a letter to the principal chiefs of the Cherokee, who at that time were encamped at the Coosawatte Towns on the Coosawatte River in Georgia. In the letter he proposed peace terms and the enchange of prisoners. Thinking that to send a soldier into their country might anger the Cherokee, he asked for civilian volunteers and accepted young Sam Smith. Young Sam was furnished with an Indian guide and interpreter, Yellow Bear, and a mulatto man volunteered to go along as cook. John Preston Arthur, in his Western NC, A History, states: “Mr. Smith aided largely in bringing these people into peaceable terms with the whites. He moved to Texas after having raised a family of distinguished sons in NC, dying in Texas when over ninety years of age.”
On 28 Feb 1796, Samuel Smith and Mary Jarrett were married in the home of an old friend of the family, William Welch, in Asheville, NC. Samuel and Mary settled on a farm in the Sulphur Springs neighborhood about 6 miles southwest of the present city of Asheville. They lived there until 1820, and all of their ten children were born there.
Mary Jarrett was the daughter of Daniel Jarrett and his wife Mary Catherine Moyers. Daniel Jarrett was born 18 Dec 1747 in Bucks Co, PA (now Lehigh Co). He was the youngest of the 13 children of John Jarrett, Sr, and wife Mary Lukens. Mary Catherine Moyers was born 9 Feb 1753 in what is now Lehigh Co, PA, dau of Adam Meyer/Moyers and his wife, Anna Catharina Schneider, who married 18 Oct 1748 at Williams Township Lutheran Church.
In 1820, when the western tip of NC was opened for settlement, Samuel Smith bought at public outcry in Waynesville what was known as the Tessentee Towns, later known as Smith’s Bridge, as Samuel and his sons built a bridge across the Little Tennessee River. This bridge was maintained and kept in use up to the middle 1900’s, when a new bridge was built.
As the children grew to adulthood, they began to scatter. Bennett Smith, the fifth son, decided in the early 1830’s to go with Robert W. Smith, a close friend, but no relation, down into Georgia and work in the gold mines to earn money to go to Texas and buy land. At the end of 1835, they decided they had enough money and Robert came on to Texas in time to be in the Battle of San Jacinto; but Bennett had to go back to NC to help his father out in a land deal. Bennett didn’t get to Texas until 1839. He joined Bob Smith at this home in Nacogdoches and there at a party given in his honor by Bob, he met Maryann Susan Vannoy, and on 21 Feb 1843, they were married in Bob Smith’s home.
In 1847, Bennett Smith sent for his father and mother to come to Texas to live with him. Samuel Smith was 82 and his wife Mary was 72 when they made the long trip from Asheville, NC to Rusk Co, Texas by wagon train. Samuel Smith died 27 May 1856 and is buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery in the Old London community in Rusk Co, Texas. His wife Mary died 8 April 1862, and is also buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery.
Samuel Smith, son of Joseph Smith and Rebecca Death/D’Ath Smith, was born 29 Aug 1765 Albermarle Co, VA, and died 27 May 1856, Rusk Co, TX. He married 28 Feb 1796 in Asheville, NC, Mary Jarrett, dau of Daniel Jarrett and Mary Catherine Moyers/Meyers. Mary Jarret was born 23 June 1775 Cabarrus Co, NC, and died 8 Apr 1862 Rusk Co, TX.
According to Bennet Smith Bible records, the ten children of Samuel Smith
and Mary Jarrett Smith, all born in Buncombe County, NC, were:
1. Nathan Smith, b. 13 Nov 1797, m. Mary White.
2. Saul Smith, b. 12 June 1799, m. Tabitha Dobson.
3. Aaron Smith, b. 7 Jan 1802, m. 23 Feb 1824 Mary Jones Israel.
4. Bacchus J. Smith, b. 8 Aug 1804, m. Sarah Baird.
5. Bennett Smith, b. 25 Sept 1806, m. 21 Feb 1843 Maryann S. Vannoy. These are the great-grandparents of Tom Jarvis, the submitter of this sketch.
6. Larken Smith, b. 26 Nov 1808, m. 29 March 1831 Louisa Long.
7. Samuel Smith, b. 5 Oct 1810, m. Jane Gaut.
8. Rev. Conaro D. Smith, DD, b. 1 Apr 1813, d. 30 Jan 1894 Macon Co, NC, m Knoxville, TN, Margaret Bearden. He was a Methodist minister, and NC Assistant State Geologist.
9. James Hervey Smith, b. 9 May 1815, m.(1) Emily Galt; m.(2) Nan Gaut [sic].
10. Altha Paulina Smith, b. 23 Dec 1817, m. William L. Moss. Additions and corrections to this First Family sketch should be addressed to Mr. Jarvis directly at the address given above. He would be delighted to correspond with anyone related to these families.
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LETTER, Charles C. Smith, Franklin, NC to Marie Gaut Arnold, Tyler, TX submitted by Tom Jarvis
April 3, 1942
Mrs. Marie Gaut Arnold
1217 S. chilton Ave.
Tyler, TexasMy Dear Mrs. Arnold:
Today I received from you a letter dated March 30th asking about the Smith Family here.
My Father, Rev. C.D. Smith, D.D., was reared near here until manhood. He died January 30, 1894, almost 82 years old. My father was a Methodist Minister and joined the Holston Conference about the year 1836. He was active in this Conference, preaching as Pastor and Presiding Elder until in early 1850 to 54 in Southwest Va. and East Tenn. He married Miss Margaret Bearden near Knoxville, Tenn. After Father was no longer active in the Ministry which he gave up because of throat trouble he lived in Knoxville until the year 1854 and then came back to Macon County, N.C.
He became interested in minerals. Having lost one eye he was not drafted in the Civil War. He represented North Carolina in the Cessession Convention, though personally opposed going into war. At one time he was Assistant State Geologist. At the age of eighty he was riding horseback across the Nantahala Mountains from Clay County to Macon County and attempting to dismount the horse he was riding he stepped on a running surface root which was very wet it having just rained. This threw his whole weight on his hip breaking his bone near the joint. Of course this made him unable to arise and he lay on the cold wet ground from 3 o’clock in the afternoon until a footman passed the next (Sunday) morning. It was 2 a.m. Monday before a Doctor was notified and arrived to give aid. Father was very active for his age and but for this accident no doubt would have lived into the nineties.
I, myself, am an old man being eighty-three past, since November 7th, last fall. I owned and operated a Drug Store here from 1887 until 1928 and since that time have been Prescription Clerk in the store I sold and am now on duty there. I have been a registered druggist since September 1, 1887. I feel that my days of activity are about at an end since standing on my feet about ten hours a day is now affecting my feet and legs. Perhaps this is enough for personal mention except to say I am married and have two daughters both of whom are married. My oldest daughter lives in Richmond, Va. and has three children, two girls and a boy. The oldest is 14 and the youngest is 6 years of age, all being about four years apart. My youngest daughter lives in Montgomery, Ala. and has no children. Her husband is Educational Director of the State Board of Health. The other son-in-law is a driggist and represents E.R. Squibb and Sons Drug Manufacturers.
I have one brother living, the youngest child. Cornaro who lives in Dallas, Texas. I do not hear from him very often. Rebecca Smith, is the daughter of my older brother who is dead. Rebecca is his only child was married but separated from her husband. She is probably living in Philadelphia, Pa. since she was working with the Immigration Bureau in Washington. That Department has recently moved to Philadelphia for housing room. I have not yet learned her address. She lived with me after the death of her father until she married. Her Father died when she was 14 years old. She is a lovable woman but rather sad from past experiences.
(Signed:) Chas. C. Smith
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LETTER, Baccus Jarrett Smith, Asheville, NV to his brother, Bennett Smith, Nacogdoches, Rusk Co, Texas (from the Gudger Love Papers, Univ of NC Chapel Hill Library, Southern Historical Collection, Chapel Hill, NC)
submitted by Tom Jarvis
Asheville, Jan 2d 1855
Yours of date 26 Nov is present and contents noticed and I do feel gratefull to hear from our old Father and Mother and still (marvel?) to hear of their good health and enjoyment of their proper minds for I have great horror for descaeptitude (?) and in particularly for an affliction of lapse of mind in old age.
I regret to hear of your misfortune in losing your Negroes, but all this is nothing when we are blessed with good health it gives us _______ to strive for more and for comforts.
Brother C.D. and his family has been here with us on their way to Franklin. He is mining for Copper near Franklin on the old George Patton Lands and I hope may succeed for he is perfectly taken up with the mining business, he has studied the science has an apperatus for testing minerals–but I regard it as a very uncertain business at best altho there are inducements in the hole country to stimulate a man into it. Our friend V.T. Jarrett is in the business at Duck Town and in Georgia and I suppose has been successful and has probably already maid a fortune. About Duck Town it is nothing to sell an interest in a single mine for $100,000 and in many instances still more.
To show you that we are prospering I will mention that we had a daughter born on 22 Dec–a fine healthy looking child and call it Jane Hardy. Sarah is quite well–this is 4 daughters and 3 sons living enough I think.
I have nothing else to write and I believe all of our relates and friends in this country are alive. Uncle Noah and family and Aunt Joanna are all well. I will mention for Father and Mother that J.M. Smith lost his wife last summer also Col James McKee has been dead several years and Col Lowery married the widow–and of course many of their old acquaintances are dead throughout this country. One thing more occurs to me that is Old Uncle Daniel Jarrett moved back to Buncombe this winter and they are quite destitute. Show this to Saul to Sam G and James H. and tell them to write to me and I will answer them also to sister Altha Moss. I will write her soon in answer to her last to me–Sarah James sends in love to you all and particularly to Father and Mother.
and accept for yourself
My best wishes
–ALOB, June 1981, Vol. II, #6, p. 81-65 thru 68