Clay County

Obituary - John A Smith

Orland Register
Glenn Co., CA
March 30, 1907

John A. SMITH Meets Death Crushed Under Barn Door at His Home Near Greenwood Switch

The sad news of the death of one of our most honored and pioneer farmers, John A. SMITH, was brought to town last Saturday afternoon. Found lying with his feet under a large barn door which had blown from its hinges, and an ugly bruise on the temple, the conclusion was naturally reached that the door had struck him in falling. While there is no positive evidence indicating precisely how he came by his death, yet the above solution seems the most feasible.

Mr. SMITH with his family resided on a prosperous farm about four miles south of Orland. Last Saturday early in the afternoon he was preparing to come to town. He went to the barn to get his team, and as he was to return to the house for some articles before leaving, his wife finally noticed that he was a long time getting ready. Going to the barn yard, she was shocked to find him lying dead as above described. Dr. Iglick was hastily summoned, but he found that death had been almost instantaneous.

John Andrew SMITH was a native of [Orange Co.] Indiana and was 62 years of age. He was a man at all times honest and true in his conviction, and while plain and outspoken in his demeanor, he commanded the highest respect of his fellow men. Kind and charitable as a neighbor, and devoted to his family, the tragic ending of this noble life, will cause many a pang of sorrow.

He was reared to manhood in his native State, joining the 66th Indiana Regiment of the Union army at the age of 18 and serving until the close of the Civil War. He and Isaac NEIDEFFER of this place were with General Sherman in his famous march through Georgia. At the close of the war he went to [Clay Co.] Illinois where he resided for eight years. While in that State he met and married Miss Matilda WOOD, who survives him. He then came to California, settling on the ranch four miles south of town, where for 31 years he followed farming with a marked degree of success.

Besides a widow, eight children survives him. They are: Mrs. W. L. and Mrs. Frank THOMPSON, and Miss Ivy SMITH of this place; Mrs. Geo. SIMPSON of Williams; Ola, Roy L., Byron and William SMITH of Orland.

The funeral services were held from the family residence last Monday afternoon, Rev. C. R. Aldridge of Willows officiating. Interment took place at Odd Fellows’ cemetery east of town, and notwithstanding the cold and disagreeable weather, the remains were followed to the grave by a long procession of sorrowing friends.

Since the above was set up in type, the following biographical sketch, has been received:

John Andrew SMITH was born December 8, 1844, in Orange county, Indiana. When not quite 18 years of age, he enlisted in the 66th Indiana Regiment, Company A, 2nd division of the 16th Army Corps. After the death of Gen. McPherson his company was transferred to the 15th Army Corps and later participated in a number of battles, among them being, Taylorville, Ky.; Richmond, Ky.; Corinth, Miss.; Iuka, Miss.; Lookout Mt., Tenn.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Altoona Pass, Buzzard’s Roost and Kingston, Ga.; Rome, Kenesaw Mt., Peach Tree Creek and Atlanta, Ga.; thence with Sherman to the sea, acting as sharpshooter on the front and advance line. He was honorably discharged at Indianapolis, July 2, 1865.

“He then went to Illinois where he apprenticed and learned the carpenter’s trade, at the same time following farming to some extent. At Louisville, Ill., May 20, 1866, he was married to Miss Matilda WOOD.

On May 9, 1872, John SMITH and family of three started for California. Arriving at the Golden State they at once located on the farm about four miles south of Orland which he had taken up as a soldier’s homestead, where he resided, and farmed until his death.

He leaves a widow, two living brothers—David [SMITH] of Bible Grove and Henry [SMITH] of Saltilloville, Ind.; and three sisters—Louise LOUIS of Bible Grove, Lizzie McCALLUM of Chicago and Sarah DYSON of Clay City, Ill. He was the father of ten children, two sons being dead. Those who survive him are: Ola, Roy, William and Byron, living in this vicinity; Mrs. W. L. THOMPSON and Mrs. F. W. THOMPSON of this place; Mrs. Geo. SIMPSON of Williams and Miss Ivy SMITH at home.

Contributed 3 Apr 2002 by Cheryl Watsey

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