GEORGE CAMPBELL SMITH has been in many ways the chief influence and factor in the upbuilding and improvement of the Town of Hardtner. He has had active relations with several other Kansas communities and is well known in the western central part of the state.
Mr. Smith was born at Cumberland in Guernsey County, Ohio, May 2, 1849. His father, George Smith, born in Pennsylvania in 1816, went to Ohio when a young man, was married in Muskingum County, and then moved to Noble County, not far from Cumberland. He followed farming and stock raising there for many years and finally retired to Fulton, Missouri, where he died in 1898. He was a republican, and was a man of high standing in his county and often took the lead in public matters. In the Masonic fraternity he served as past master of his lodge and was a representative to the Grand Lodge. For many years he was one of the leading members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in his community.
George Smith married Sarah Collins, who was born in Cumberland, Ohio, in 1818, where her father, Findley Collins, was one of the pioneer settlers. Her death occurred at Fulton, Missouri, in 1893. George Smith and wife had five children: Margaret, who died at Marshall, Missouri, was the wife of Rev. E. K. Squire, a Cumberland Presbyterian minister also deceased; J. F. Smith, a stock dealer and business man, died at Fulton, Missouri; J. M. Smith, who was traveling representative for Day, Allen & Company, of Chicago, died at Cumberland, Ohio; George Campbell; and L. S. Smith, a ranchman at Sturgeon, Missouri.
George Campbell Smith spent his early life in Southern Ohio, attending the rural schools of Guernsey County and also the National Normal University at Lebanon. On leaving school at the age of seventeen he went to Chicago and for a year worked in a retail grocery house and was two years with a wholesale grocery firm. He then went back to the Ohio farm, and in 1879 came west to Colorado and the same year settled in McPherson County, Kansas. He was a farmer there for two years and in 1882 moved to Barber County, where he homesteaded a quarter section on Mule Creek. He proved up his claim and lived on it for fifteen years. After leaving this farm he returned to Missouri for one year, and then engaged in business at Kiowa in Barber County, Kansas.
Mr. Smith became a resident of and participant in the affairs of his present community in 1907. He established his ranch and farm at Hardtner that year, and at the same time engaged in the real estate business. He has done much to build up the town and has caused much of the townsite to change owners. His home is on Main Street and Woodworth Avenue.
A republican in politics Mr. Smith served two terms as register of deeds of Barber County. He was reared as a Cumberland Presbyterian, but is now a Methodist and helped establish a church of that denomination at Hardtner and was its recording steward. He was formerly a member of the Knights of Pythias and is affiliated with Kiowa Lodge, Ancient Order of United Workmen.
In 1888, at Waterloo, Iowa, he married Miss Sarah Showalter. She died at Marshall, Missouri, in 1901. There were three children by this marriage: Ada M., the wife of Lloyd Abbey, who is a carpenter by trade and has a claim of 160 acres in Arizona; Georgia M., a teacher in a business college at Springfield, Illinois; and Alice, unmarried and living at Capron, Oklahoma.
In 1906, in Barber County, Kansas, Mr. Smith married Miss Perminda Cook. Her father, Asa Cook, spent all his life in Indiana as a farmer and died in that state in 1876. Asa Cook married Caroline Summers, a native of Ohio, who died at Dunning, Nebraska. Mrs. Smith was liberally educated and was a very successful teacher before her marriage. She attended the public schools of Indiana and various summer normal schools and her teaching was done in Woods and Blaine counties, Oklahoma. Mr. and Mrs. Smith had three children: Caroline C. and Azor Campbell, both of whom are attending school, and Ruth Elizabeth, who died at the age of fourteen months.
Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p.,  leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.
Tom & Carolyn Ward
Home Page for Kansas
Search all of Blue Skyways
The KSGenWeb Project