History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 513
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HISTORY OF TEXAS.
regions of Minnesota and Wisconsin He
remained there about four years, after which
he went to St. Louis, and then to New
Orleans. He was in New Orleans in 1850,
and, the "gold fever" then raging throughout
the country having seized him, he started
for the Pacific coast. The trip was made )y
steamer by way of Panama, and lie landed in
San Francisco in Mlarch, 1850. HIe nmined
only a few months, when he turned his attention
to the live-stock business: buying
and selling butchers' stock, mainly cattle and
sheep. He made considerable money at this,
but in 1853 lost nearly all he had accumnulated
up to that time by an unfortunate
venture in the sheep industry. He was in
vo wise discouraged, however, and by patient
industry and good business management was
soon on his feet again. In 1856 he conceived
the idea that there was considerable
money to be made buying and driving cattle
through from Texas to California, and came
to this State that year in company with a
friend, Henry Harrison, for the purpose of
trying his fortune in this business. But before
the enterprise had been got well under
way Mr. Harrison died, and this caused Mr.
Smith to change his plans. He decided to
locate in Burleson county, and, establishing
himself here, was soon engaged in handling
cattle on a large and profitable scale. His
business, like everyl)ody's else, suffered severely
during the war, so much so that by
1862 his bunch of cattle had dwindled to half
what it was before the opening of hostilities.
Ile sold out what was left and entered the
Confederate service, where he remained until
the war was over.
Having married in 1859 Mr. Smnith bought,
in 1866, a tract of land consisting of 350
acres, on which he settled and turned his attention
actively to farming and stock-raising.
The " flush times" following the close of tlhe
war, when all kinds of agricultural products
sold for good prices and fortunes were easily
made in cattle, brought Mr. Smith much
prosperity. His accumulations were regularly
invested in good bottom land and in
stock, and in this way lie laid the foundation
of the success which lhas come to him in later
years. His real-estate holdings at this time
amount to 2,600 acres, 1,500 acres of which
are under fence. His ranch is well stocked
and a small portion of it in cultivation. IIe
has been devoted to his business interests exclusively,
never having held any office but
that of Constable, which lie accepted and the
duties of which he discharged for a number
of years as a matter of accommodation to his
neighbors an(l fellow-citizens. He is a
Democrat in politics, having cast his first
Presidential vote for Lewis Cass in 1848,
and having affiliated with the Democratic
Mr. Smith's wife's maiden name was
Eleanor Milam, she being a daughter of Jol n
and Levizie Milam and a native of Tennessee,
where she was born February 29, 1824. At
the time of his marriage to her she was
the widow of Drury Miller. Mrs. Smith
came to Texas in 1843 with her first husband,
settling in Burleson county, where lie died in
1858. By her marriage to Mr. Miller
Mrs. Smith had five children: Josiah, Liphus,
Charles, Mary A. and John, only one of
whom is now living, Mary A., the wife of A.
Isbell. By her marriage to Mr. Smith she
has had two children: Eliza, now deceased,
and George L.
This brief biography gives only the outlines
of an active, varied and successful
career. In what is here said there is hardly
a suggestion of the vicissitudes through which
Mr. Smith has passed. Life with him has
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/553/: accessed January 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .