Portrait & Biographical Album of Whiteside Co. 1885
21 Apr 2005
Source: Portrait & Biographical Album of Whiteside County, IL
Originally published 1885 Chapman Bros., Chicago, IL
Transcribed by: Becky Jones
Hiram P. Smith, a farmer of Clyde Township, resident on section 7, was born in Black Creek Township, Luzerne Co., Pa., May 20, 1834. His parents, Abraham and Catherine (McMurtrie) Smith, were born in New Jersey. Their parents were natives of New England and were of Irish extraction. His paternal ancestors emigrated to New England previous to the days of the Revolution. His father and mother were married in Black Creek Township, and they lived there all the years of their united lives, attaining a respected and useful position in society. The father was prominent in military affairs and held the rank of Major in the militia about 17 years. He died Sept. 30, 1876, aged 79 years. The mother is 84 years of age and is still resident on the homestead. Five of their nine children are living.
Mr. Smith is the fifth child in order of birth and until he reached his majority lived at home, meanwhile obtaining such education as was possible at that period, and also acquiring a complete knowledge of agricultural arts. On obtaining the control and direction of his own time he attended Wyoming Seminary for some time, and completed an entire course of study. He afterwards engaged in teaching in his native county, passing the alternate summer seasons in agricultural labors. He passed six years in this manner and meanwhile came West, arriving in Lee Co., Ill., in October, 1858.
Nov. 19, 1861, he was married to Catherine, daughter of John and Jane (Flick) Smith. Mrs. Smith is of German descent, her grandparents having emigrated from Germany to Pennsylvania. Her parents were married in Columbia Co., Pa., and afterwards located in Lycoming County, in that State, whence they came, some years later, to Clyde Township and are now living on a farm on section 18. Mrs. Smith was born in Briar Creek Township, Columbia Co., Pa., Nov. 19, 1841. She was about two years old when her parents went to Lycoming County, where she was principally educated. She was 17 years of age when her father removed to Illinois. The family first located in Ogle County, removing later to Lee County, fixing their residence near Dixon. She became a teacher and taught school two terms in Lee County and was married there. The family circle now includes six children,--Wellington L., Emma J., Mary A., Clement R., Eva M. and Hiram P., Jr.
Soon after their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Smith settled in Fair Haven Township, Carroll County, this State, whence they removed, two years afterward, to Clyde Township. They managed a farm two years in the interests of John F. Demmon, after which they purchased 80 acres of land on section 7, Clyde Township. The property is finely located and the homestead now contains 160 acres of land, all under good improvement and well stocked. At the time it came into the possession of Mr. Smith it was all unbroken prairie. The cattle on the place are valuable grades of Short-Horns.
Mr. Smith affiliates with the Democratic party and has held the minor offices of the township. With his wife, he is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.