Pages 669-670, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Allen and Woodson Counties, Kansas: embellished with portraits of well known people of these counties, with biographies of our representative citizens, cuts of public buildings and a map of each county / Edited and Compiled by L. Wallace Duncan and Chas. F. Scott. Iola Registers, Printers and Binders, Iola, Kan.: 1901; 894 p., [36] leaves of plates: ill., ports.; includes index.




The horologe of time has marked off a long period since Peter Smith first came to Woodson County, and thirty-six years have been added to the cycle of the centuries since he took up his abode upon his present farm on section twenty-two, township twenty-five, range sixteen. He has become a successful farmer and stockman, and is to-day the owner of four hundred acres of the rich land of Southeastern Kansas.

Mr. Smith was born in Prussia, near the little village of Drosam, March 26, 1834, and is a son of Peter Smith, Sr., a farmer, who spent his entire life in Germany. His widow married Peter Yogem, who brought the family to the United States in 1842, locating in Wisconsin near the town of Hartford, where he and his wife spent their remaining days. The children of her first marriage were Margaret, who became the wife of Henry Soras and died in Milwaukee, Wis., and Peter. By the second marriage there are also three children, Anna, who married Tom Shoe; Susie and Mary.

Peter Smith of this review spent the first eight years of his life in the fatherland and then accompanied the family on the long voyage across the Atlantic to the new world. Reared in Wisconsin he there remained until nineteen years of age, after which he spent two years engaged in farm work in Putnam County, Ill. He then came to Kansas, attracted to the state by the report that land could be obtained here at a nominal price. One of the pioneers of Woodson County, he settled first in Everett township, where he secured a homestead, and in 1865 he came to his present farm which has been his place of abode continuously since. He has transformed the wild land into richly cultivated fields and the track of the shining plow has been followed by fields of grain that, ripening under the lot summer sun, has yielded abundant harvests, bringing him a good profit for his labors. His four hundred acres of land now constitutes a valuable property improved with all modern accessories and conveniences, supplied with good machinery and substantial buildings and giving him a good return for his labors.

Mr. Smith has been twice married. In Woodson County in 1859


he wedded Henrietta Steffen who died in 1879, leaving the following children: Frank, of Woodson County; Charles, of Osage County, Kas.; Henry and John, both of Woodson County; Matilda, wife of Edward Kinmonth, of Kansas City, Mo.; Augusta, wife of Frank Englebright, of Woodson County; Louise, wife of John Schoepflin, of Woodson County, Kas., and Mary. For his second wife, Mr. Smith chose Catherine Beer, whom he wedded in 1880. The children of this union are Annie, Peter, Rebecca and Fannie. Prior to the time when she became the wife of our subject Mrs. Smith had married John Richard, now deceased, and they were the parents of six children, Fred, of Woodson County; Maggie, wife of George Smith, of Iola; Samuel, of Woodson County; Rosa, wife of Charles Smith; Lydia, wife of Bert Wagner, of Buffalo, Kas., and Walter, who is living in Woodson County.

Mr. Smith's labors as an agriculturist have never been interrupted since coming to Kansas save by his service in the Civil war. When the destruction of the Union was threatened by the rebellion in the South he joined the Second Regiment of Kansas Cavalry under Colonel Cloud, and became a member of Company C, commanded by Captain Barker. This regiment served in Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky, participating in the battles of Prairie Grove, the capture of Fort Smith, Flat Rock, Kentucky and Flat Rock, Ark. At the last named he was taken prisoner and sent to Tyler, Tex., where he was incarcerated for nine months or until the close of the war, when he returned to Kansas with an honorable record as a defender of the Union. In the discharge of his duties of citizenship he has always been as true and faithful as when he followed the starry banner upon the battle fields of the South. He gave his political support to the Republican party until 188—' when new issues having arisen he became a supporter of the Greenback party and is now allied with the People's party. He does all in his power for the normal growth and progress of the county along substantial and beneficial lines, and his life is in harmony with his professions as a member of the Church of God. A farm hand for several years after his arrival in Kansas, he new stands upon the plane of affluence and not only deserves recognition as a successful man, but as one whose success has been so worthily achieved that his business record is deserving of emulation.

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