An American Family History

David Henry Smith

Lucas County is in south central Iowa. It was founded in 1846 and the county seat is Chariton.

When Kansas was officially opened to settlement in 1854, both abolitionists and pro-slavery settlers rushed to the territory to determine whether it would become a free or a slave state. It was admitted to the union as a slave-free state on January 29, 1861.

The 1890 census materials was lost in a 1921 fire.

David (Dave) Henry Smith was born in Meigs County, Tennessee in October, 1856. He was the son of Josiah Smith and Sarah Pitts. He was listed in the 1860 census as age three. 

About 1865, he and his family went by flatboat down the Tennessee River from Tennessee to Tazewell County, Illinois. About three years later they moved on to Chariton, Iowa.

His name in the 1870 census was incorrectly listed as Daniel aged twelve. 

At the time of the 1880 census he was working as a farm hand/servant in the John and Mary Frank household in Liberty Township, Warren County, Iowa. He was age 21. John and Mary Frank were his future wife's uncle and aunt.

He married Martha Oraline Keller. Oraline was born on December 25, 1862 in Peoria, Illinois. Her parents were Jakob George Keller and Matilda Frank. Oraline's mother, Matilda, was Andrew Frank's sister. Andrew married David's sister, Elizabeth.

David and Oraline's children were:
Jessie Edward Smith born June 21, 1885 (married Minne Mae Rash),
William Herbert (Willie) Smith born September, 12 1886 (married Floria M. Jones),
Ernest R. Smith born in May, 1889 (married Lenna Ethel Rash),
Ina Blanche Smith Brown born in January 1,1890 (married Bruce S. Brown),
Cora Edith Smith born November 16, 1891 (married Bertie Ray Umbarger),
Bessie Mae Smith born in August 19, 1893,
Hoke Willis Smith born January 18, 1895-died young,
and Mamie E. Smith born October 31, 1899 (married Roy C. Nicewaner). 

David H. Smith appeared in the 1885 state census of Benton Township, Lucas County, Iowa. He was 26 and a farmer. Oraline was 20 and born in Illinois. 

W. H. Smith appeared in the 1900 census in Warren Township, Lucas County, Iowa. The household consisted of David (W. H. sic) born in October, 1856, Oraline born in December, 1862, Jessie born in June, 1884, Willie born in September, 1885, Earnest born in May, 1889, Ina born in January, 1890, Edith born in February, 1892, Bessie born in August, 1893 and Mamie born in September, 1899.

By 1910 they were in Canville, Neosho County, Kansas.

The family appeared in the 1920 census in Chanute Township, Neosho County, Kansas. David was 65, Oraline was 56 and their daughter Mamie age 20 was living with them. David drove an ice wagon. David was living in Kansas in 1938 when his sister Nancy died.

Oraline died on January 11, 1945 and David followed soon after on February 5 1945. They are buried together in Elmwood Cemetery, Neosho County, Kansas with their daughter Ina and her husband Bruce Brown.

Meigs County is located in East Tennessee and was formed from Rhea County in 1836. In 1819 the legislature took over part of the Cherokee Nation which was on the south east bank of the Tennessee River and this is the land that became Meigs County.
Children of Josiah Smith, Sr.
and Sarah Pitts
  • Elizabeth Jane Smith Frank
  • Allison Woodrow Smith
  • Nancy Ann Smith Wilson
  • Mary Ellen Smith Widaman Dixon
  • David Henry Smith
  • Josiah Allen Smith
  • John Smith
  • George Washington Smith
  • William Smith
  • Ida Belle Smith Hoops
  • Sarah Catherine Smith Hoops
  • Charles Elmer Smith
  • Cora Edna Smith Downard
  • Tazewell County, Illinois was formed out of Peoria County in 1827.

    During the Civil war many citizens of East Tennessee opposed secession, but the area was under Confederate control from 1861 to 1863. Some citizens engaged in guerrilla warfare against state authorities and joined the Union army, while others were loyal to the confederacy. It was a heartbreaking case of neighbor against neighbor and brother against brother.

    In the 1830s settlers began arriving in Iowa from Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, Kentucky, and Virginia. Iowa became a state in 1846.




    Miss Minnie Rash and Mr. Jessie Smith were married at the home of the bride's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Fountain Rash, in Derby last Wednesday evening at 5 o'clock. Rev. Armstrong pastor of the M. E. church officiated. Following the ceremony an elegant dinner was served. The bride is a most estimable young lady and well fitted to preside over a home. The groom is an industrious and capable farmer and a young man of strictest integrity. They will go to house-keeping on a farm southeast of Derby.

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    ©Roberta Tuller 2023
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