Hugh Jason Smith, who is now serving a four-years term as judge of the court of common pleas and for the past eighteen years has been an active member of the bar af[sic] Kansas City, Kan., was born on a farm near Lincoln, Logan county, Illinois, Aug. 23, 1865. He is the son of Denison Smith, a carpenter by trade but later a farmer, who was born at Jamestown, N. Y., and died May 10, 1893, at Argentine, Kan. The mother of Judge Smith before her marriage was Mary Eliza Collins, who was born at Elkhart, Logan county, Illinois, and died in 1907.
Judge Smith was reared to the age of seventeen in Logan county, Illinois, attending a country school, but in 1882 he accompanied his parents to Harrison county, Missouri, where they located on a farm and where he ocntinued[sic] to attend a country school two years, after which he taught school for three years. The first two terms were taught in Harrison county, Missouri, and the third term was taught in Argentine Wyandote county, Kansas, in the winter of 1888-9. He had come to Argentine, Kan., from Harrison county, Missouri, in the spring of 1887 and during the following summer he worked at the carpenter's trade there, having gained a knowledge of it by helping his father. In 1888 he completed a course in Spauling's Commercial School, of Kansas City, Mo., in just three months and nine days and was informed by Prof. Spaulding that he had completed the course in a shorter time than any one of the school had ever done before. From 1888 until 1891 he engaged in contracting in Argentine, where he did some work on the streets and built the city hall which yet stands. In the fall of 1891 he opened a real estate office in Argentine and at the same time began the study of law, being admitted to the bar in April, 1893, since which date he has devoted himself to the law either as a lawyer, as city attorney of Argentine, or as judge of the common pleas court. He served as city attorney of Argentine eleven years, finally resigning that position. In the fall of 1908 he was elected judge of the court of common pleas for a term of four years which he is now serving.'
On Nov. 3, 1891, Judge Smith was united in marriage to Miss Minerva Wight, a very successful teacher of Harrison county, Missouri. Judge and Mrs. Smith have two daughters, Bertha May, born April 27, 1893, who is now a senior in the Kansas City (Kan.) High School, and Mary Lucile, born April 7, 1899. Judge Smith is a Democrat in politics. In the Masonic order he is a Knight Templar, a Noble of the Mystic Shrine, and a member of the auxiliary branch of the Eastern Star. He is also an Elk, a member of the Modern Woodmen, and is a Moose.Pages 1166-1167 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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