October 20, 1955 Reprinted August 21, 1975
Transcribe by Pat Stubbs
* CALíS COLUMN *
†††† We are in receipt of a letter from Mrs. Dan Kelty, as follows:
9056 Rancho Road
Temple City, Calif.
Oct. 14, 1955
†††† Since your publishing of the Cornwell material, I have been working harder than ever on a history of the family.† Would you be kind enough to publish this family data and request that anyone who belongs to this line please write to me:
†††† Five brothers and a sister--one brother, named Jesse, who settled in North Carolina; Obadiah, who had a son, Joseph, of Tennessee; and Elijah, who married Catherine Cavanaugh, lived in South Carolina, and died in Jasper County in 1827.† Elijah had children:† Elijah, Jr., Eli, Hiram, Obadiah, George W., Betsy, Catherine, Nancy, Thenia and Sarah.
Thank you so much for your help.
Mrs. Dan Kelty
†††† (Editor's note.† We presume that the above surnames were Cornwell, although this is not set forth in the letter.† We hope that any reader who can furnish light on these members of the family will write to Mrs. Kelty at the address given in the opening of her letter.† We have a lot of additional information that we hope to publish in the near future.† In the meantime any reader who can give Mrs. Kelty the information she craves, is urged to write directly to her.† Mrs. Kelty is a reader of our paper and will get any information that may be published concerning the Cornwell family† If you do not have time to write her, send us your information and we shall be glad to get it into the paper so that it may benefit a larger number by far that would be helped by a single letter).
†††† The following letter has been received by Lum Smith, of Pleasant Shade, concerning relatives of the Tip Smith family.† The letter is as follows:
311 Bryan Street
September 26, 1955
Dear Sir or Cousin:
†††† I guess you will be surprised to hear from one you probably never heard of, although some of the family told me of you.† I am Homer Faulkner, a grandson of Robert A. Smith.† I Have been told that he had a brother, who did live near Pleasant Shade, by the name of Tip Smith.† Anyway all that I can remember about the kin in Tennessee is that when I was a small child, I think a cousin, John Smith, and someone else visited my grandparents and some others in the family.† I would like to ask you if you ever knew a Maggie Smith in the family.† She was a little girl about 50 years ago.† This cousin John, as I remember him, was the father of the little girl, Maggie.† I received a post card from her after they returned home from their visit to Trigg County, Ky.† If she is still living I wish you would write and give me her name and address.
†††† I have a brother who lives in Nashville, who was down to your home quite a long time ago.† He saw Uncle Tip's widow.
†††† I would appreciate hearing from you and would like to know more about the Tennessee relatives.† My address is Homer Faulkner, 311 Bryan St., Hopkinsville, Ky.
†††† P. S.† My mother's maiden name was Dora Smith, who passed away in December, 1927.† My father, W. P. Faulkner, died March, 1927.† My grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Robert A. Smith, have been dead more than 30 years.† They have one daughter living, a Mrs. Poindexter.† Another daughter Mrs. Mattie Mashburn passed away about three or four years ago.† I would be glad to hear from you.
†††† The above letter has been turned over to the editor of the Macon County Times.† Although the editor is not related to the Smith family, as far as he knows, he does have some information about the members of the family or other days.
†††† Robert A. Smith, the grandfather of the writer of the above letter, was born about 1836, being 14 years of age when the census of Smith County, Tenn., for the year 1850 was taken.† Robert A. Smith's father was Allen Smith, who died prior to 1850, but was living in the census of 1840, which the writer has.† At the time of the 1850 census, Allen, father of Robert A. Smith, was dead.† Near neighbors of Allen Smith 114 years ago were:† William C. Bransford, a Baptist minister of the long ago;† Alexander Stubblefield, Cyrus Brevard, Joseph Gifford and Fleming Stubblefield.
†††† Allen Smith married Miss Mary Wilburn, commonly known as Polly Ann Wilburn, a daughter of Thomas Presley Wilburn.† The census of 1850 shows the following members of the family:† Mary Smith, born in Tennessee in 1807; John H. Smith, born† in Tennessee in 1832;† Robert A. Smith, (probably Robert Allen Smith, for his father), born in 1836; Mary E. Smith, born in Tennessee in 1839;† William Henry Smith(Tip), born in Tennessee in 1841; and Daniel L. Smith, born in Tennessee in 1844.† An older son, Thomas M. Smith, and his young wife, the former Sallie Ann Beasley, lived next door.† Thomas Smith and his wife had no children in the year 1850, but later became the parents of a number, including Braddock, John, Robert and Rainey Smith whose wife Altha Smith, died on Sept. 22nd, less than a month ago.† From the best information obtainable, it appears that Mrs. Smith and her fatherless children lived on Peyton's Creek 15 to 20 miles southeast of Lafayette, Tenn.
†††† The Maggie Smith to whom the above letter refers is most probably the present Mrs. Maggie Coley, wife of Van Coley, of near Lafayette.† She is the daughter of the late Robert Smith and his wife, Mrs. Martha Ann Taylor Smith, both whom died a number of years ago.† You may address Mrs. Coley as Mrs. Van H. Coley, R. 2, Lafayette Tenn., Mrs. Sam Wilmore, R. 5, Lafayette, is a sister of Mrs. Coley.† Mrs. Frank Jenkins, of Route 2, Lafayette, is another sister of the two ladies just named.
†††† Tip Smith has a son, Allen Smith, of R. 1, Westmoreland, who is now nearly 90 years of age, and perhaps could tell you quite a lot of the history of the family.
†††† There are three families of Smiths in the Pleasant Shade section of Smith County.† One of these is Malcolm Smith's descendants.† Malcolm was born in Chatham County, North Carolina, in 1765,came to Tennessee about 150 years ago as a Baptist minister.† I might here ask if the report we once had of the Robert A. Smith, formerly of Trigg County, Ky., that Robert A. Smith was a Baptist minister is correct.† Mr. Faulkner can inform us if we were correctly told as to the religious affiliation of his grandfather.
†††† We are informed that Malcolm Smith was related to the Allen Smith who died more than a hundred year ago, but we do not have the exact connection but would be glad to have it.† I may add that Tip Smith's name was William Henry Harrison Smith, named for an early president of† the United States, nicknamed "Tip" Smith got his name or rather nickname.
†††† Another branch of the family was that of Hire Bill Smith, who was the father of Buck Smith, the guerilla of Civil War days.† Hire Bill married a Miss Beasley, a relative of the wife of Thomas Smith, above mentioned.
†††† Tip Smith has two grandson, Elder J. H. Smith and his brother, Levie Smith, who are Baptist ministers.† The former is a missionary in Japan and the latter resides in Lafayette.†† The Smiths in our part of the world are noted for superior singing ability.† Elder Luther Smith, father of Lum Smith, to whom Mr. Faulkner addressed his recent letter, was perhaps the greatest singer of them all. We wish we knew exactly what the connection between the two branches of the family are, but we confess that in spite of all our questions and the answers we have received, we cannot tell the exact relationship.
†††† We are informed that Allen Smith, above mentioned as being nearly 90 years of age, knows something of the connection between the various families of the two or three branches of the Smiths and we plan to pay him an early visit and learn more if possible.
†††† In the meantime if any of our readers can give us something in the way of information about the earlier members of the Smith family in Middle Tennessee, please feel free to write us and we shall be glad to publish any additional information that may be sent to us.
This Article Appeared In The Times
But Was Not Actually Titled Calís Column
†††† Bobbie West, a leading farmer of the north side of the County, brought to the editor Wednesday morning an unusual ring that he found about ten years ago in the waters of Puncheon Creek a few miles north of Lafayette and near the old mill site.† The ring is the largest we have ever seen for wearing on the hand.† It is one inch and three sixteenths in diameter or size.† It has the following inscribed on the ring:† "Jack Earle, 8 f 6 Giant."† The ring was found by Mr. West about ten year ago while he was fishing in the creek near the old mill site.† Who Jack Earle was we do not know, and we have been unable to learn definitely as to who he was.† A few years ago an unusually large man called "Happy Jack," was with a show here in Lafayette.† He was seen by many of our people.† As to whether "Happy Jack" and "Jack Earle" were one and the same person, we do not know.† However, Mr. West declares he found the ring ten years ago, which was long before "Happy Jack" appeared in Lafayette.† Yet the ring which appears to be of pewter may have been bought just for its oddity and nobody ever wore.† On the other hand a man who had fingers large enough to require such an enormous ring must have been sure enough a giant.† The ring shows signs of considerable wear.†††
†††† If any reader of the Times ever heard of Jack Earle and can give us some additional information, we shall be glad to print same in the paper.† Please feel free to write us.