Tuesday, April 13, 2010

More Devier J. Smith tidbits in McCook NE Newspapers

At the break of the SDGS meeting on Saturday, Chris Christensen mentioned to me that he had checked the Library of Congress Chronicling America historical newspaper site that Barbara Renick mentioned in her talk, and that it had the McCook (Nebraska) Tribune newspaper from 188? to 1922.

I vaguely recalled finding something in this newspaper several months ago, and when I checked the voluminous Genea-Musings archives, I found this post - My Smiths owed tax money! The post indicated that I found that article in a search of "Devier J. Smith" - what about for his name "D.J. Smith?" And for his son David D. Smith" (or "D.D. Smith"), his daughter "Della Smith," his daughter "Matie Smith" and his wife "Abbie Smith?"

I spent some time tonight searching on the Chronicling America site and found many more mentions of my favorite Smith family! Here are two:

* On 7 May 1885, the newspaper published two short articles:

In the first one, it noted that:

"The Wallace house on Madison street, lately occupied by L.B. Stiles, is now occupied by D.J. Smith and family, late arrivals from Concordia, Kans. Mr. Smith purchased the property, and moved into the same, Saturday night."

With this information, I now know the approximate date that the Smith's came from Concordia and bought a house, and the location of the house (at least the street name). I wonder if the house is still there?

The second short article noted that:

"The new town in Cheyenne county, Kansas, Wano by name, is attracting considerable attention from settlers and speculators. D.J. Smith of our city was at that point, last Thursday, and bought 1,000 acres of land in the neighborhood of the new town."

More information about the property in Wano, including the acreage and the approximate purchase date.

* I wondered what happened to the lawsuit for the back taxes. Here is what appeared in the newspaper on 21 November 1902:

The brief item in the "Equity Cases" section reads:

"John E. Kelley vs. Abbie Smith. Dismissed."

I am pretty sure that Abbie Smith, the widow of Devier J. Smith, had left town years before and was residing in San Diego, California in 1902, as were her three living children, Della (Smith) Carringer, Matie (Smith) Chenery and David D. Smith. This is good news - it looks like the estate owes nothing to anybody now!

A lesson learned here: "Revisit successful searches with alternative name spellings, or collateral names - you may be surprised at what you find!"

Another lesson: "When a speaker provides a website URL to explore - go do it ASAP! You may forget about it until later."

Thank you, Chris Christensen for the lead to the McCook newspaper!!! It's neat when your friends help you out.

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